Scep server returned an invalid response

Fetching data from ESP32

2023.03.26 14:17 Gyerannn Fetching data from ESP32

I've set up a webserver on my esp32 that returns a json with the orientation of a gyroscope connected to it uppon receiving a request. Im trying to fetch data from this server (running on locally on ) inside react (which runs on localhost:3000). Here is the function that should fetch these values:
const fetchData = async () => { try { const response = await fetch(url); const text = await response.text(); const parser = new DOMParser(); const doc = parser.parseFromString(text, 'text/html'); const bodyText = doc.body.textContent; const json = JSON.parse(bodyText); setData(url); } catch (err) { setError(err); } };
Trying to solve the problem I've noticed that it actually tries to reach http://localhost:3000/ instead of and gets a placeholder as a response. I have no idea why it does so as im not a react guy, could someone please explain this to me? Any directions to resources on the matter would be welcome as well.
submitted by Gyerannn to react [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 14:17 Gyerannn Fetching data from an ESP32

I've set up a webserver on my esp32 that returns a json with the orientation of a gyroscope connected to it uppon receiving a request. Im trying to fetch data from this server (running on locally on ) inside react (which runs on localhost:3000). Here is the function that should fetch these values:
const fetchData = async () => { try { const response = await fetch(url); const text = await response.text(); const parser = new DOMParser(); const doc = parser.parseFromString(text, 'text/html'); const bodyText = doc.body.textContent; const json = JSON.parse(bodyText); setData(url); } catch (err) { setError(err); } };
Trying to solve the problem I've noticed that it actually tries to reach http://localhost:3000/ instead of and gets a placeholder as a response. I have no idea why it does so as im not a react guy, could someone please explain this to me? Any directions to resources on the matter would be welcome as well.
submitted by Gyerannn to reactjs [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 14:15 Gyerannn Fetching from ESP32 in React

I've set up a webserver on my esp32 that returns a json with the orientation of a gyroscope connected to it uppon receiving a request. Im trying to fetch data from this server (running on locally on ) inside react (which runs on localhost:3000). Here is the function that should fetch these values:
const fetchData = async () => { try { const response = await fetch(url); const text = await response.text(); const parser = new DOMParser(); const doc = parser.parseFromString(text, 'text/html'); const bodyText = doc.body.textContent; const json = JSON.parse(bodyText); setData(url); } catch (err) { setError(err); } };
Trying to solve the problem I've noticed that it actually tries to reach http://localhost:3000/ instead of and gets a placeholder as a response. I have no idea why it does so as im not a react guy, could someone please explain this to me? Any directions to resources on the matter would be welcome as well.
Excuse me if this is not the correct sub to ask
submitted by Gyerannn to esp32 [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 14:09 Drillimation Can't log into GameMaker, spits out Error 98

I started GameMaker this morning and I can't log in and instead gives an error, stating the servers are under maintenance. The maintenance is over, and I still can't log in.
I reported this issue to YoYo Games and I'm awaiting a response. Is there a way to fix this?
submitted by Drillimation to gamemaker [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 13:43 teal_lantern27 My (23F) BF’s (23M) mother and little sister (22F) like to bully him and it’s painful to watch

My BF and I are living in our family’s homes because we have an awful housing market. However, my BF’s family situation has gotten really bizarre recently which makes him want to move out. It’s mostly due to the bullying by his mother and little sister.
About my BF: We met in law school. He’s smart, sensible and hardworking. He’s wholesome and kind-hearted (and according to his friends/family, he’s always been this way). He studies hard to be a lawyer, volunteers around the community, coaches little kids, offers to fix people’s homes/cars (he’s a handyman and mechanic), pays for everything himself, and despite all this he still finds the time/energy to spoil me and his family with incredible thoughtful gifts or acts of service (he loves to cook, clean and fix things for people). As a result, he’s a really loveable, helpful and independent man!
About his little sister🚩: She’s the opposite. To be blunt, she’s selfish, inconsiderate, rude, and a materialistic attention-seeker. She steals my stuff, leaves mess everywhere, a high school dropout, no hobbies except drinking/sex, prone to screaming tantrums, and posts her butt on IG daily. She’s had a lot of problems (like unwanted pregnancies with unknown men, speeding tickets, falling for scams, etc) which her family pays for her.
I have two example events to explain what she’s like- my BF’s graduation party (finishing law school) and his birthday party. Both events she didn’t want to attend because she didn’t think they were important (wanting to see her friends instead) but I encouraged her to attend. But at these parties, whenever the attention went to my BF (like making a toast or giving him gifts), she starts causing a scene: crying about drama, bragging about her wild drunk stories, complaining about how difficult her retail job is and how frustrating it is to have another abortion, demanding people to take sexy photos of her, etc. I found this infuriating because his sister is always the focus (being the problematic child) and this distracts from the recognition he deserves for his hard work.
About his mother🚩: The mother is an enabler and “best friend” of the little sister. She loves spoiling her daughter and acts like "one of the girls” when her friends are around. She paid for her daughter’s entire lifestyle- her bedroom, the abortions and medical bills, the speeding fines, all her clothes/makeup/perfumes, etc. She prides herself in being the breadwinner of the family and often splurges it on her daughter. She has never financially contributed to her son (my BF), making him pay for everything since he turned 18.
The Major Problem 🚩🚩🚩: There had always been little red flags about his mothesister. But it really started to show last week when his parents were away for the week and my BF and I took care of the house. When his parents returned, his sister claimed all the credit for keeping the house clean and looking after the dog, even though she was actually out partying the entire week (only returning home occasionally when hungover, leaving trash/vomit/mess for my BF to clean). Their mother praised the little sister, but my BF tried to correct her claiming he did most of the work. They turned against him saying “if you really did the work, you would’ve said so”. His sister joined in scolding him.
Then this morning, we woke up and he immediately started doing chores (mowed the lawn, fed the dog, did the laundry, washed dishes) while his sister laid on the couch hungover, eating Doritos and burping away. Once he was done with the chores, he joined in helping me cook breakfast for everyone.
His mother entered and demanded he does the bathroom, ranting about how he’s lazy and never does any work around the house. He defends himself, saying he did the bathroom last week, but hadn’t been home since then because this week we went away for our 2-year anniversary and my birthday. His sister joined the bandwagon, saying “I bet you’ve never even cleaned the toilet! You need to do it! It’s a mess!” (she had gastro this week).
He was about to drop everything to clean the bathroom, but the task would take too long and we needed to pick up my mother from the hospital. He explained this to them and promised to do clean the bathroom when he gets back. They scoffed at him “ohhh ok! You think you’re sooo important!!” and continued to rant about how lazy he was. His mother huffed about how disappointed she is in having a son like him.
He leaves the room, to finish the laundry from this morning, I’m left in the kitchen finishing breakfast, cleaning, and putting their groceries away while his mother and sister continue shaming him. His mother even said “he’s so irresponsible, unlike his sister”. I was so confused. So I started listing the things I see him around the house, including the fact he cooks/cleans up after THEIR mess. But I also mentioned he does wonderful things for me and my family. Big mistake to mention that… his mother said she didn’t appreciate hearing that. “He shouldn’t be helping you!! His home and his responsibly is HERE, and that’s final!”
Stumped and feeling triggered, I packed our breakfast in takeaway containers and texted my mother that I’ll be a bit late, while he cleaned the bathroom. We drove away in silence, with his phone buzzing constantly- which was his sister bragging about how she just cleaned the toilet and how her brother is hopeless/lazy. Their mother responded with praise.
Now, we are sitting at my house in silence completely stumped. His sister just texted demanding an apology, especially one to their mother. My BF keeps telling me how ashamed he is that he let me see this happen- apparently it’s normal, he just walked away unbothered when they act out like that. But it was such a shock to me, they had only ever been on their best and generous behaviour around me. I can’t help but feel so sorry, frustrated and ANGRY that he endures that. Besides telling him to move out, I’m not sure how to help him, or what advice he needs.
submitted by teal_lantern27 to relationship_advice [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 13:38 kcr141 As If On Q: part 1

  Alright, so I got this idea from a response by u/Nightelfbane to this post. I realized that yeah, a Q from Star Trek could defeat the federation thoroughly and instantly if they wanted to. But then I though, is that what they would actually do? And then the more I thought about it, the more interesting this idea seemed to me.
So without further ado, here is the first chapter of this train wreck of a fanfic: Q vs. the NOP federation
Memory transcript subject: Tal, Venlil Space Corps
Date [standardized human time]: December 6, 2136
I had been separated from my exchange partner. I hoped he had managed to escape with the rest of the evacuation, but either way, I had been left behind on Sillis. I was alone, and on the run.
That was when I came across the extermination officer. He seemed to be lying on the ground unconscious, and I could tell the venlil was an extermination officer from his uniform. I also took note of his rainbow socks which reminded me that some of Venlil Prime’s extermination offices were becoming accepting of humans. Still, the question remained. What was this officer doing here?
Suddenly, his eyes opened. The extermination officer quickly shot to his feet and looked straight at me.
“Holy shit! Look at you!” he shouted.
The venlil appeared to study his own arms and paws.
“Look at us! We’re so fluffy!” he said before reaching out and ruffling the fur on the top of my head.
The man was practically jumping with joy, and I had no idea how to respond.
“I didn’t expect to find anything, maybe some hydrogen gas if I was lucky, but this!” he said.
The extermination officer looked up and around for a few moments.
“And I don’t think they’re going to find us here,” he said.
The officer returned his gaze to me, baring his teeth. For a moment, I was startled. Was he trying to imitate the way humans smile?
Whatever he was doing, his “smile” faded when he saw my apprehension. The officer looked around, seeming to become aware for the first time of the devastation that surrounded us.
“Could you, by any chance, tell me what I’m wearing right now?” he asked.
The question left me even more confused than I was a moment ago. Nonetheless, I replied.
“You’re wearing the uniform of a chief extermination officer. Who are you?”
The man didn’t answer my question. Instead, he burst into an almost manic laughter.
Did this extermination officer have predator disease?
As he laughed, an antimatter warhead detonated off in the distance.
Extermination officer!? Wow, Okay! Holy fuck! So you guys aren’t quite as cuddly as you seem. Alright, I get it.”
Another bomb detonated, this one much closer than the last.
I still had no idea what the man was talking about, but he was starting to make me nervous. He seemed to go back to studying his paws, and I was about to ask again who he was, when suddenly, he lifted his right paw up next to his head. In a motion that looked rather painful, the extermination officer pressed his claws together and flicked them past each other producing a piercing
And then everything went white.
submitted by kcr141 to NatureofPredators [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 13:38 Chaozprism My Wacky Theory on the "sinner" in the crystal.

This is simply my random thoughts regarding who the "sinner" is I apologize for any lore mistakes I make ahead of time for those that simply know a LOT more than I do by reading all the books etc in game :)
First of all I assume you have played through the "caribert" storyline before reading this.

Ok now given that it seems dain KNOWS who the sinner is and simply hasnt told the traveller because he says before hand that "time is not a limitation for one such as him" or along those lines.
First I believe that the "sinner" is responsible for the curse of immortality itself not the gods and directly or indirectly for the curse of the wilderness. (the hilichurl tranformation on non-pure khaenrian's)
To me it's likely it wasnt even meant to be a curse but an empowerment for the khaenrians but celestia when they responded (the cataclysm) made it go awry so their true unchanging immortality was tainted with loss of mind and other errors.(erosion?) Immortality is not a natural state, decay is. With death life returns.
When clothar and the abyss sibling visited the chamber where the sinner was, the proximity to it was enough for the sinner to override the abyss siblings protection and directly influence them. He also at that time cleansed clothar of the curse (while also inserting command instructions into poor clothar's mind) and allowed him to pass on special imbuement to his son caribert. (which is quite possibly kaeya's father)
This ability to use power to influence other entities I believe we've seen many times.

Rhinedotter made DURIN the shadow dragon, but she doesnt seem to be inherently evil at all , she seems to care for albedo like a son , if a good friend of alice. Again the sinner likely took control of rhinedotter's dragon and dvalin had to stop it ; getting tainted in the process. She also made the rifthounds but again it looks likes they also got co-opted by the sinner.
Ever wonder why the frost nail hit right there where it did in dragonspine? To cleanse corruption of course. In the Chasm we see the abyss order trying to contaminate the nail that's there so the shadow mud can take over. The removable walls in the chasm have a diamond symbol just like the diamond of the sinner. They are removed by light from your stone.
Orobashi who supposedly read a book and then attacked the raiden shogun? What does that sound like to you. Forbidden knowledge! supposedly which allowed the sinner to take control of orobashi. ever wonder why there is tatarigami where orobashi died and creatures with dark auras? The foul taint of the possession still mars that land.
The thunderbird: Raiden killed the bird for what reason? We dont know but likely again the sinner (who is a dark fate entity) took contol maybe empowered it and it was going to detonate over inazuma's main island instead of over serai where raiden got it. The time ripping on tsurumi island where the thunderbird is from, the presence of rift hounds all point the finger at him a dark entity of time and fate.
King deshret: Got depressed after his wife (the god of flowers) was killed, he blamed the gods and turned away from them. But maybe the sinner again was at work, turned somebody against another leading to her death. Then Deshret reading forbidden texts became suddenly exposed directly to the sinners machinations and again the sinner took control of deshret. Luckily rukkadevata had an answer but it took her giving up thousands of years of wisdom to remove the corruption on deshret and he died anyway but the sinner at least was stopped that time.
King Irmun: The one eyed king likely was the host for the sinner (via forbidden knowledge conduit) which allowed him to go to war with the other archon's lands, turning advanced harvest machinery into weapons of war. I also believe natlan is to the west of where the main overground entrance to khaenriah is located, with sumera to the east. Natlan being warlike as they are probably put up quite a good fight even against machines of war and fought him to a standstill.
The archon war: If we're assuming the sinner can influence , control or outright possess entities why not other gods? He's more powerful than them. This could very well have been the cause of the archon war and why some gods allied and some just died along the way.
Xiao himself had his mind captured by one of the "dark gods" which are likely subservient to the sinner. Xiao fights demons.. so what are they if not just darkly infused entities.

I know it's a lot to blame the sinner for all of this, but who better than a defeated but powerful simmering imprisoned entity who is likely the second who came.
I believe his power level is above the 7 archons, so more on par with the primordial one which means it's likely that he's the "second who came" who went to war with the primordial one and lost. (which is why he appears imprisoned) but even in this state he's still incredibly powerful just restricted. So he's had to work through proxies, but look at the damage he's done to the world.

Another no proof crazy theory I have is that the traveller had a conversation with the sustainer after they were captured (at the beginning of the game) and like "the bourne identity" agreed to try and save teyvat from the sinner's machinations by going "undercover". But since the sinner has the ability to get information from the entirety of time the traveller was forced to forget (and likely paimon as well) so they would not be discovered as being agents for the sustainer. They were placed in a particular time frame (500 years after the cataclysm) for the plan to work. Likely theres a special key that involves coming into contact with all 7 gods that will reveal that which was hidden and the sinner's machinations can be stopped.
Maybe paimon is a transformed and forced to forget shade of the primordial one. She'll have her day in the sun at the end of the tale when at last the sinner is eradicated from teyvat.

I dont know if any of this is right or i'm barking up the tree in a completely crazed manner , maybe it's simply what i'd like to be true in the story.
If you have any comments or thing you think I need to change because of this or that, that you know to be true then dont hesitate.
submitted by Chaozprism to Genshin_Lore [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 13:25 varunvenaik Powerful probiotics - why and how to introduce these into your diet

Now most of us have heard a lot about antibiotics. They’re those wonderous medications prescribed by doctors which slow down or completely eliminate the growth of bacteria in our bodies which contributes to infections either inside our bodies or on our skin or teeth. However probiotics are much less well known about.
So, what are probiotics?
When people talk about “bacteria”, your mind almost naturally assumes they’re referring to harmful germs. For example bacteria in public places that causes us to get sick, or bacteria on out-of-date food that has become spoiled is probably the first thing you think of when someone refers to bacteria. But you might be surprised to learn that bacteria isn’t always bad! Enter, probiotics. Probiotics are bacterial microorganisms found in our body which actually have health benefits – hence why they are called the “good bacteria”! Probiotics have a range of benefits for our health and wellbeing; one of their most important benefits is that they help us digest food. they help us digest our food and destroy cells that carry diseases.
The most common probiotics are those belonging to the Lactobacillus group and the Bifidobacterium group.
How can I introduce probiotics into my diet?
You might have seen some of my other articles talking about the benefits of fermented foods such as kombucha or sauerkraut, and how to introduce these sorts of foods into your diet. Well there’s a reason why I’m so excited about fermented food, and that’s partly because they contain probiotics, making them an extremely valuable addition into everyone’s diets. In addition to kombucha and sauerkraut, other good sources of probiotics include yoghurt, sourdough bread (one of my favourite types of bread) and kefir (a popular fermented milk product).
What are the benefits of probiotics?
Probiotics effectively restore the balance of microorganisms in your body.
One of the important times you should take probiotics is when you are taking antibiotics for a bacterial infection. When you take antibiotics for such infections, your bacteria count (consisting of both good and bad bacteria) naturally depletes and the natural balance of microorganisms is disturbed. By taking probiotics you effectively “offset” some of the depletion of the good bacteria, and help your body return to its optimum healthy condition. It is highly encouraged that when you are taking a course of antibiotics that you take a probiotic tablet each time you take an antibiotic tablet. Probiotics can restore your immune response when taken in this manner, and can also assist with negating some of the adverse side effects of antibiotics on our bodies (for example digestive or gastrointestinal issues). Probiotics are also generally useful for treating or mitigating some of the adverse effects of gastrointestinal conditions (whether or not they are a side effect of antibiotics) – for example, there has been research linking the consumption of probiotics to easing inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome and diverticular disease.
I’d highly recommend that you increase your consumption of probiotics naturally occurring in food (for example kombucha, yoghurt and sourdough bread) and also buy a jar to take when you’re taking antibiotics.
submitted by varunvenaik to u/varunvenaik [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 13:18 Black_Londoner Blood to stain the steps of St Paul's Cathedral in protest at Harry's Afghanistan kill count.

This is from the Sky News (UK) Website
"Human blood is set to "drench" one of the UK's most famous landmarks in a protest over Prince Harry's controversial remarks about the number of people he killed in Afghanistan.
Russian artist Andrei Molodkin says he will project a sculpture featuring blood donated by Afghans on to St Paul's Cathedral in the coming days, along with footage of the Duke of Sussex.
It comes after Harry faced criticism for revealing in his memoir that he killed 25 Taliban fighters while serving in Afghanistan, writing that it was "not a number that fills me with satisfaction, but nor does it embarrass me".
The prince also admitted that he did not think of those he killed as "people", but instead as "chess pieces" that had been taken off the board.
Molodkin told Sky News that Harry's remarks had made him "very, very angry" and the idea of his project "is to drench St Paul's Cathedral in the blood of Afghani people".
"They read they are just 'chess figures'... for some prince hunting by helicopter," he said. "It looked like a safari situation.
"How he told it, for him it's like a computer game."
The artwork contains blood donated by Afghans, says Andrei Molodkin
The sculpture is called Royal Blood Blood 'pumped' into royal coat of arms
Molodkin said four Afghans in Calais had already given blood for the sculpture and another five Afghans in the UK will donate when the stunt is carried out before the end of March.
The artist said about 1,250ml of blood will be used for the artwork after being taken from donors by a registered nurse, kept in a fridge and then "pumped" into the sculpture of the royal coat of arms.
Explaining how the project will work, he said: "Blood will go in the royal coat of arms, it will circulate in there.
"It will be projected... on to the cathedral - so all the cathedral will be in the blood of Afghani people."
Moldokin said a video featuring Prince Harry will also be projected on to the cathedral.
Artist will try to take blood from inside cathedral
Molodkin said he will attempt to take the Afghans' blood inside the cathedral - where Harry's parents, King Charles and Diana, were married - but he has not approached St Paul's to seek permission.
"I think in the church, you can give the blood," he said.
"It's a cathedral - it's for everyone. Everyone can come there and pray. Donating blood, it's kind of a way of praying."
Sky News approached St Paul's Cathedral for comment but did not receive a response.
Molodkin, who used to serve in the Soviet Union's army, said he explained to all the Afghan donors why they were giving blood.
Asked how they felt about Harry's remarks, he replied: "I think they are very angry."
He added: "Even in the army, you're scared to participate in the shooting of others… you're very stressed about. But he thinks it's a video game."
Afghan on Harry: 'We should get compensation'
Molodkin, who now lives in the south of France, hit the headlines last year after he produced a sculpture featuring an image of Vladimir Putin that was filled with blood donated by Ukrainian fighters.
"Now I can't go back to Russia," he told Sky News.
He believes he would face jail for his artwork if he returns to his home country under its current laws.
"I can't go there while [Putin] still has power but I truly believe it's not possible to continue like this," he added.
"People who kill so many people and start a blood war like this… and try to brainwash… can't stay longer."
THE CONTROVERSIAL ARTIST WHO USES BLOOD AND OIL TO MAKE HIS POINT To coincide with the World Cup in Qatar last December, Andrei Molodkin unveiled a replica of the World Cup trophy that slowly filled with crude oil. It had a symbolic price of $150m – a figure that matched the amount of money allegedly spent on bribes and kickbacks to FIFA officials Last August, Molodkin presented a sculpture of the White House that reportedly contained the radioactive blood of Nagasaki-born men to commemorate the 77th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombs In May last year, Molodkin showcased a glass portrait of Vladimir Putin which was filled with the blood of Ukrainian soldiers. An image of the artwork was said to have been live-streamed near Moscow's Red Square as Mr Putin oversaw Russia's Victory Day parade Back in 2013, Molodkin opened an exhibition called Catholic Blood that featured an installation where he pumped blood donated solely by Catholics around his replica of the Rose Window at Westminster Abbey, which he saw as a Protestant symbol Artist Andrei Molodkin Image: Andrei Molodkin says he has been creating artwork containing human blood for more than a decade Molodkin said he has "worked with human blood for 15 years" and the sculptures he creates "represent the symbol of power", adding: "Then the people who are abused by this power, I ask them to donate blood for this".
Read more: Biggest revelations from Harry's memoir Taliban bans women from universities
Harry's comments in his book prompted criticism from senior military figures, with Admiral Lord West - the former head of the Royal Navy - reportedly calling the prince "very stupid" and warning he had increased the risk of threat against the Invictus Games.
Taliban officials called for Harry to be put on trial, with a senior leader in the group saying the militants he killed were "not chess pieces, they were humans".
Click to subscribe to the Sky News Daily wherever you get your podcasts
In response to the criticism, Harry told Late Show host Stephen Colbert it was a "dangerous lie" to say he had "somehow boasted" about the number of people he killed in Afghanistan.
The duke carried out two tours in Afghanistan during his time in the military, including one tour between 2012 and 2013 when he served as an Apache attack helicopter co-pilot gunner"
submitted by Black_Londoner to SaintMeghanMarkle [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 13:10 varJoshik Cursed Rulers: Parallels Between Auberon & Emhyr

Final part in the series about the mirroring act between the three Aen Elle elves & their Continental counterparts. Previous works: Black Knights: Parallels Between Eredin & Cahir Love(less) Sorcerers: Parallels Between Avallac'h & Vilgefortz

“Emperors rule their empires, but two things they cannot rule: their hearts and their time. Those two things belong to the empire.”
“The end justifies the means.”
Leaders of the highest order for their people, both rulers pursue the greater good at the expense of decency and their own humanity. A greater good to be achieved through similar means – by begetting the child who is prophesised.


In the Witcher, both Auberon and Emhyr are embroiled in a plot of siring the child of prophecy with Cirilla Fiona Elen Riannon – their blood relative. Genetically, the incest is a matter of degree: Emhyr is Ciri’s biological father, Auberon Ciri’s ancestor 8 generations past. Symbolically, however, the degree collapses with Auberon because a few human generations are meaningless to elves. They call Ciri Lara’s daughter, effectively deeming Ciri Auberon’s granddaughter. But the reader – not unlike Ciri herself – won’t know about this until the very end of the tale.
Notionally, both rulers bind their actions with Ithlinne’s prophecy. The problem with prophecies is they decouple arguments from verification, lending themselves to the rationalization of all and any action. At least insofar as knowing the future accurately is impossible. This is the case for humanity, it is not the case for elves. Elven prophecies were made by the elves and for the elves in the first place. Consequently, the degree to which each ruler knows the prophecy to be true and believes in it differs. For Emhyr, mystical secret knowledge of the universe is irrelevant in comparison to political expedience: reason of state is what the tomorrow will bring. The Nilfgaardian Emperor is neither a mystic nor a fatalist. Contrary to the Alder King – a Sage, a ruler, and an elder – who has witnessed and likely verified some of what the Seers have prophesised. Elves conceive of the nature of time as cyclical in which the fate of things is tied up in the endless repetition of endings giving birth to new beginnings, the dance of attraction between life and death, two sides of the same coin which form the singular eternal truth of existence – change is only an eternal reoccurrence and re-arrangement of all. Auberon, you see, is a bit of a mystic. And even without Seers privy to secret knowledge, an extraordinary life span reduces the elves’ proclivity to black swan fallacy, or at least pushes the error probabilities. But at the end of the day, mysticism takes the cake.
The idea that either ruler must be the progenitor, however, comes at the instigation of an outside force.
Shortly after Ciri’s birth Emhyr is visited by a sorcerer. Emhyr has a strong aversion to mages; he was cursed by one. Even so, Vilgefortz proves himself capable of helping him regain the Nilfgaardian throne and is straightforward about what he wishes in exchange – gratitude, favours, privileges, power. Vilgefortz tells Emhyr about Ithlinne’s prophecy – a version about the fate of the world; a human interpretation. Then he plants the seed as to what Emhyr should do to steer the fate of this world. Naturally, he has his own agenda. It is not a huge leap of imagination to conceive of Auberon having been similarly persuaded by Avallac’h (an elven Knowing One who thematically parallels the human Vilgefortz). Not only are Avallac’h and Auberon tied by broken familial bonds, they are each a participant of the Elder Blood programme; and each, a Sage. Avallac’h serves nearly as a double for Auberon, his own fate also tied with Ciri’s. And Auberon is a “willing unwilling” in his arrangement with Ciri; implied so in his rage when he reveals Ciri ought to be grateful to him for lowering himself to the endeavour at all. There is an alternative.
Neither the Emperor nor the Alder King is pursuing the incestuous course of action out of lust. But both have the option to waive being the sire. Ithlinne’s prophecy is not explicit about the father of the Swallow’s child. For elves the match is backed by science. For humanity – pragmatism.
Emhyr has ordered to wipe out the Usurper’s name from the annals of history and is cementing his earthly power, conquering and ensuring the succession laws play out in his favour. Not only is he legitimatizing his rule over Cintra – the gateway to the North – by marrying its last monarch’s granddaughter, by keeping it in the family, he is also consolidating his rule among the Nilfgaardian aristocracy. The Emperor’s concern lies with the dynastic struggle for power: it is his blood that should rule the world and because history is bending its arc according to Nilfgaard’s dictation that means surmounting the Nilfgaardian succession laws. From such perspective, not fathering Ciri’s child would create numerous problems. Ciri as Emhyr’s heir would remain behind any other male offspring he might have (with any Nilfgaardian aristocrat). Ciri might not be acknowledged as a legitimate successor in Nilfgaard in the first place as she is a foreigner, born in Cintra at a time when her father was not yet an emperor; a bastard, effectively, and a girl besides. Ciri’s husband, moreover, may have designs on power himself and his remaining under Emhyr’s control, or Ciri’s control, is not a guarantee. It is difficult to be the correctly-shaped chess piece in a game of interests of the state. That a widely recited prophecy about the fate of the world can lend an aura of destiny to the brutal political machinations undertaken to seek retribution and pursue earthly power is convenient; a descendant who will be the ruler of the world – a bonus. But to get there sacrifices must be made.
‘Cirilla,’ continued the emperor, ‘will be happy, like most of the queens I was talking about. It will come with time. Cirilla will transfer the love that I do not demand at all onto the son I will beget with her. An archduke, and later an emperor. An emperor who will beget a son. A son, who will be the ruler of the world and will save the world from destruction. Thus speaks the prophecy whose exact contents only I know.’ ’What I am doing, I am doing for posterity. To save the world.’ - Lady of the Lake
Notably, the manner in which the Emperor claims to understand Ithlinne’s prophecy does not make guarantees that a father’s incest with his daughter will ensure his progeny will one day save the world. The saviour is a few generations away and the causal arrow between now and then is not direct: the son could die, could father a child with a genetically non-fitting partner, could be sterile, or could turn out to be a daughter altogether. Not to even begin with what the world needs saving from in the first place; again, elven prophecies were written by the elves and for the elves. Emhyr var Emreis is neither an elf, a geneticist, an idealist nor a mystic. He is an autocrat.
Elder Blood is the creation of elves and it is elves who understand how their genetic abilities play into handling what was foretold by Ithlinne. Emhyr’s daughter, the Lady of Time and Space, is the descendant of an Alder King who has utilized Hen Ichaer in the past and whose ambitions lie in an altogether different ball park than that of an Emperor of one single world. Appropriately to the Saga’s love for subversion, it is ironic that human understanding of elven prophecies remains on the level of poetry, while elves – the irritatingly poetic, mystical species – can read the science elevating the prophetic jargon into something more. Which regardless does not invalidate the problem with prophecies: they lend themselves to the rationalization of action, frequently covering up the real horses the powerful might have in the race. Legitimatization of the ruler’s right to remain the leader of their people is relevant in Auberon’s life too. More on that when we return to the Fisher King parable and the nature of curses upon the two rulers.

Role & Relationships

Let’s take a look at the characters’ personalities.
Appearance: a play of contrasts
A very tall, slender elf with long fingers and ashen hair shot with snow-white streaks. An elf with the most extraordinary eyes – as on all Elder Blood carriers – reminiscent of molten lead. A man with black, shiny, wavy hair bordering an angular, masculine face that is dominated by a prominent nose (hooked, presumably, or Roman if you like). The Emperor of Nilfgaard does not resemble an androgynous elf by any means. But this does not mean nothing remains in him of the elven gene pool. Not only does Emhyr’s etymological origin link with the Romano-Celtic world underpinning all things elven in the Witcher. Nilfgaardians are effectively the Romano-Brytons. The human population in the South of the Continent mixed with elves heavily, retaining a lot of elven law, customs, language, and DNA. As Avallac’h says about heritability, “the father matters,” and Emhyr was one half of the equation for getting Ciri.
Rex Regum - King of Kings
The readers are probably more familiar with the imperial system and how that features in the depiction of Nilfgaard. Auberon Muircetach’s position as the Supreme Leader of the Aen Elle – as opposed to merely a “king” – is instead much more reminiscent of the station of a High King.
Ancient and early kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland boast many High Kings (e.g. Ard Rí Érenn Brian Boru, Ard Rí Alban Macbeth, Vortigern, King of the Britons, etc). The High King was usually elected and set above lesser rulers and warlords as an overlord in a land that shared a high degree of cultural unity. Emperors usually ruled over culturally different lands (regularly obtained through recent or ongoing conquests). In character such high kingship was sacred: the duties of the ruler were largely ceremonial and somewhat restricted, unless war, natural disaster or any other realm-wide occasion created a need for a unified command structure. The Irish High King, for example, was quite straightforwardly a ruler who laid claim to all of the land of the Emerald Isle. Noteworthy, because the ruler is frequently seen as the embodiment of the land, associated with the health and well-being of the realm that the land sustains. In quasi-religious terms, High Kings gained their power through a marriage to, or sexual relationship with, a sovereignty goddess; frequently, a mother goddess who was associated with the life-giving land. As one of the most frequently studied elements of the Celtic cosmology, this feature is instantly recognisable in the outlook of the elves in the Witcher and factors heavily into Auberon’s relationship with Ciri. Ciri who is the avatar of the Triple Goddess – the Virgin, the Pregnant Mother, and the Old Woman Death. As Sapkowski notes in Swiat króla Artura. Maladie:
“…no Wiccan mystery in honour of the Great Triple, cannot be performed, [without] the goblet and the sword. Grail and Excalibur. The rest is silence.”
Through the Triple Goddess’ interaction with her God-counterpart (a ruler who briefly assumes the role of the god) is showcased the eternal cycle of life – one which cannot be realised without the interaction of the cup (feminine) & the sword (male). Excalibur is the symbol of rightful sovereignty and its wielders are frequently powerful men, but Ciri is a woman and a woman is the Grail, bringing salvation and new life. To possess the Grail is to legitimize oneself as the ruler, as the leader, protector, and father figure of the realm. Thus a King of Kings must do exactly that. A protector, a father figure, and a druid (wise man) merge into a symbolic whole in the Supreme Leader of the elves.
(But Ciri is also the witcher girl and owns a sword, unyielding before the matter of her gender. And though many a men might take her for the Lady of the Lake, she is not about to part with her sword.)
The realm is all
From early age, Emhyr’s father instilled an understanding in his heir that nothing counts more than the interest of the state. The blood of the Emreis family must be on the throne. Fergus never abdicated, not after torture, not even after his son was turned into a mutant hedgehog in front of his eyes. Love for his child did not sway Fergus from having his son suffer in the interests of power and the realm. This is how the shard of ice in Emhyr’s heart forms. Auberon, equally, “thinks of England” when attempting to regain his daughter’s legacy and restore their people’s power. The circumstances of Lara’s demise, however, beg the question about the Alder King’s role in facilitating or enabling the conditions that let things spiral out of control and break beyond repair. The stakes were infinitely higher for Auberon than they are for Emreis’ dynastic struggle. But what would an answer to this question change? In their cold hearts these characters see themselves each as duty-bound.
Ambitious and gloried, they nevertheless occupy different stages in their lives.
Emhyr’s ambition burns bright and fresh. Auberon’s has dwindled into a shadow of the past; buried under having witnessed and lived through the sacrifices that a ruler makes in the name of power. Emhyr chooses to seek retribution and power beyond what would befall him should he accept his life as Duny (the cursed, pitiful Duny), the prince consort of Cintra. Never losing sight of his goal, love and human happiness become temporary phases and means to an end, and Emhyr returns to Cintra only in the form of flames and death to pursue his daughter in insane ambition. The White Flame retains an active disposition; a lust for life. Neither Emhyr nor Auberon gallop at the head of their armies though, leading instead from the rear. They have lackeys for carrying out their will remotely (e.g. Cahir and Eredin). Emhyr, however, is said to be otherwise highly involved in the ruling of his empire, even if many revolutionaries who had helped him on the throne had hoped he would remain but a banner of the revolution. In contrast, the Alder King has more or less withdrawn from life and active service. In presence of Avallac’h and Eredin, Auberon appears much more like the standard Emhyr had refused to become. Of course, many decisions the equivalent of which Auberon has already made are still ahead of Emhyr, including as concerns the freedom of his daughter.
A ruler’s heart
Did Emhyr believe that he would be able to see Pavetta in Ciri and thus push through with the incest? Did Auberon hope to glance the memory of his wife in the eyes of Lara’s “daughter” and manage in this way? As already noted, neither ruler is pursuing their plans out of lust, but as lust must be induced for the act to bear fruit I cannot help but wonder what these characters must do to themselves to follow through with their plans. Because the love that is called for between a woman and a man in order for new life and hope to be born is in this instance abnormal. Yet it is undoubtedly love that plays a huge role in determining both Emhyr’s and Auberon’s eventual fate.
Until the emergence of false-Ciri, Emhyr var Emreis is said to have had numerous ladies in the imperial court. Little is known about Auberon’s disposition, but by the time Ciri starts frequenting his bed chamber it has become evident the image of a dowager king fits the elf like a glove; disaffected with romantic dalliance, he is still aware of the courtly intrigue and expectations surrounding it.
The next evening, for the first time, the Alder King betrayed his impatience. She found him hunched over the table where a looking glass framed in amber was lying. White powder had been sprinkled on it. It’s beginning, she thought. At one moment Ciri was certain it was about to happen. But it didn’t. At least not all the way. And once again he became impatient. He stood up and threw a sable fur over his shoulders. He stood like that, turned away, staring at the window and the moon. - Lady of the Lake
Emhyr’s marriage to Pavetta, Ciri’s mother, was an unhappy one. In his own words, he did not love “the melancholy wench with her permanently lowered eyes,” and eventually would have had the vigilant Pavetta killed. Inadvertently, Emhyr caused Pavetta’s death anyway.
‘I wonder how a man feels after murdering his wife,’ the Witcher said coldly. ‘Lousy,’ replied Emhyr without delay. ‘I felt and I feel lousy and bloody shabby. Even the fact that I never loved her doesn’t change that. The end justifies the means, yet I sincerely do regret her death. I didn’t want it or plan it. Pavetta died by accident.’ ‘You’re lying,’ Geralt said dryly, ‘and that doesn’t befit an emperor. Pavetta could not live. She had unmasked you. And would never have let you do what you wanted to do to Ciri.’ ‘She would have lived,’ Emhyr retorted. ‘Somewhere … far away. There are enough castles … Darn Rowan, for instance. I couldn’t have killed her.’ ‘Even for an end that was justified by the means?’ ‘One can always find a less drastic means.’ The emperor wiped his face. ‘There are always plenty of them.’ ‘Not always,’ said the Witcher, looking him in the eyes. Emhyr avoided his gaze. ‘That’s exactly what I thought,’ Geralt said, nodding. - Lady of the Lake
After Pavetta’s demise Emhyr hounds his own daughter to the ends of the earth, killing her grandmother, burning down her home, and driving Ciri into an exile from which she never fully recovers. An exile which kills the innocence in her; the snow-white streaks in Ciri’s hair are from the trauma. In contrast, Auberon does not seem to even know what became of Shiadhal – his partner and the mother of their daughter together. On the verge of death he confuses Ciri for Shiadhal and says, “I am glad you are here. You know, they told me you had died.” The Alder King recalls Shiadhal affectionately, in the same loving breath as he recalls their daughter Lara. Lara whose exile – voluntary or not – killed her.
When Ciri was six years old, Emhyr took a lock of hair from her and held onto it; out of sentiment and for his court sorcerers to use. One of Auberon’s last lines to Ciri involves tying a loose ribbon back into Lara’s hair.
In regard to their brides-to-be, both rulers are saddled with fakes. A fake Ciri-Pavetta and a fake Shiadhal-Lara. But Emhyr’s and Auberon’s attitude toward the fake is diametrically opposite. Emhyr sees false-Cirilla as “a diamond in the rough.” Auberon calls Ciri “a pearl in pig shit, a diamond on the finger of a rotting corpse.” For Emhyr, a diamond is the essence of his poor peasant girl. While a pearl in pig shit, for Auberon, remains the essence of Ciri. Neither ruler can entirely ignore the social vigilance extended toward the ruler’s bedchamber either. The idea of a “foreign bride” is frowned upon among the Nilfgaardian aristocracy; it decreases their ability to influence the Emperor. Ciri’s social status at Tir ná Lia is never explicitly addressed, but the presence of human servants – all of whom that the reader sees are female – and casual xenophobia from Auberon himself does not make it hard to venture a guess.
‘If I were … the real Cirilla … the emperor would look more favourably on me. But I’m only a counterfeit. A poor imitation. A double, not worthy of anything. Nothing …’ - False-Cirilla Lady of the Lake
‘It’s all my fault,’ she mumbled. ‘That scar blights me, I know. I know what you see when you look at me. There’s not much elf left in me. A gold nugget in a pile of compost—’ - Ciri Lady of the Lake
The Alder King is unable to bring himself to love Ciri. The Emperor relents, caring for his daughter at last as a father should at the very end, in the one moment where it matters. Moreover, Emhyr ends up eventually marrying his own reason of state and comes to love the false-Cirilla. The contrasts do not end here. Real Ciri threatens to tear Emhyr’s throat out for what he is planning to do to her (unknowing that he is her father), yet with Auberon Ciri turns submissive and grows attached. She weeps over Auberon’s corpse and vows vengeance on Eredin for killing the Alder King. Ironic as Auberon never intended to let Ciri go, while Emhyr does let his daughter walk free. The shard in Auberon’s heart never melts. It shifts in Emhyr’s.
In their last meeting with the girl, both rulers implicitly reveal their blood relation to Ciri.

Cursed Rulers of the World

Emhyr’s tale begins and is framed with a curse. Likewise Auberon’s. And for both it is love in its different manifestations that will shift the curse just enough to offer closure. For healing largely entails obtaining closure.
‘They were silent for a long time. The scent of spring suddenly made them feel light-headed. Both of them. ‘In spite of appearances,’ Emhyr finally said dully, ‘being empress is not an easy job. I don’t know if I’ll be able to love you.’ She nodded to show she also knew. He saw a tear on her cheek. Just like in Stygga Castle, he felt the tiny shard of cold glass lodged in his heart shift.’ - Lady of the Lake
The reference to H. C. Andersen’s fairy tale of the Snow Queen is self-evident. Emhyr var Emreis is an Emperor whose heart has been pierced by a shard of ice. In the Saga the legend is elven and refers to the Winter Queen who conducts a Wild Hunt as she travels the land, casting hard, sharp, tiny shards of ice around her. Whose eye or heart is pierced by one of them is lost; they will abandon everything and will set off after the Queen, the one who wounded them so gravely as to become the sole aim and end of their life.
There are two ways in which to interpret the way Sapkowski applies the legend of the Snow Queen in the Saga. First, as a complement to the author’s stance that in life - where most things are shit - the Holy Grail is a woman, because it is the love of a woman and the hope a woman instils that often makes men act in inconceivable ways; love is the great motivator and the great balancer of scales. Almost as powerful as death. Or more so?
‘I would not like to put forward the theory that hunting for the wild pig was the primordial example of the search for the Grail. I don’t want to be so trivial. I will - after Parnicki and Dante - identify the Grail with the real goal of the great effort of mythical heroes. I prefer to identify the Grail with Olwen, from under whose feet, as she walked, white clovers grew. I prefer to identify the Grail with Lydia, who was loved by Parry. I like New York in June… How about you? Because I think the Grail is a woman. It is worth investing a lot of time and effort in order to find it and gain it, to understand it. And that’s the moral.’ - A. Sapkowski Swiat króla Artura. Maladie
In this reading, we find the framing to the stories of Geralt and Yennefer, Lara and Cregennan, Avallac’h and Lara, and many others. Including the story of Ciri herself – for Ciri is ultimately the author’s Grail in more ways than one. More than one party goes to great lengths to solicit her favour in a guise that includes elements of a love relationship but not the heart of it.
Secondly, we can interpret the legend in universal terms: the shard of ice is the definitive experience of our lives which distorts reality and makes the rest of our lives spin around it in one way or another. For Emhyr, such an experience could have been the trauma experienced in his youth. Fergus’ uncompromising death conditioned the boy early on to sacrifice personal feelings to the cause and let the only true feeling in his heart remain forever locked behind the ends a ruler must go to unthinkable lengths to achieve. Fergus did not deem his son above suffering for a cause and the son learned the lesson. Until…
In Andersen’s Snow Queen, Gerda manages to find her brother Kai in the Snow Queen’s castle, but despite her calls his heart remains cold as ice. Only when Gerda cries in despair do her tears finally melt the ice and remove the piece of glass from Kai’s eyes and heart. In the Witcher, the shard in Emhyr’s heart moves first upon witnessing his true daughter’s angry tears. For the second time – in thanks to the bogus princess of Cintra; his poor raison d’etat.
It brings us to the defining contrast in Emhyr’s and Auberon’s stories, and it concerns alleviating the suffering of those are bound to you by blood or love.
Recalling another case of incest that resulted in Adda the strigga, we may remember that the Temerian king recognises that his daughter is suffering and insists on disenchanting her instead of killing her. Realising that your own blood – who has been thrown into this world of suffering thanks to you – is suffering and consequently choosing to do something to alleviate this suffering fortifies the Saga’s faith in enduring human decency. Geralt himself is thoroughly vexed by the prospect of letting the same evil happen to Ciri that happened to himself and does everything within his power to prevent it (failing, trying anyway). Here lives the redemption of man, and in redemption his rebirth.
They passed a pond, empty and melancholy. The ancient carp released by Emperor Torres had died two days earlier. “I’ll release a new, young, strong, beautiful specimen,” thought Emhyr var Emreis, “I’ll order a medal with my likeness and the date to be attached to it. Vaesse deireadh aep eigean. Something has ended, something is beginning. It’s a new era. New times. A new life. So let there be a new carp too, dammit.”’ - Lady of the Lake
As Emhyr and false-Cirilla take a stroll in the gardens after Stygga, they pass a sculpture of a pelican pecking open its own breast to feed its young on its blood. An allegory of noble sacrifice and also of great love – as False-Ciri tells us.
‘Do you think—’ he turned her to face him and pursed his lips ‘—that a torn-open breast hurts less because of that?’ ‘I don’t know …’ she stammered. ‘Your Imperial Majesty … I …’ He took hold of her hand. He felt her shudder; the shudder ran along his hand, arm and shoulder. ‘My father,’ he said, ‘was a great ruler, but never had a head for legends or myths, never had time for them. And always mixed them up. Whenever he brought me here, to the park, I remember it like yesterday, he always said that the sculpture shows a pelican rising from its ashes.’ - Lady of the Lake
It is difficult to set aside our trauma and not pass it on to our children. Letting our children be free to choose and not sacrificing them on the altar of our fate is to rip open ourselves, calcified and bound to our path, and to feel all of it as we grope in the dark to feel for them. Emhyr’s father might not have gotten it entirely wrong, though his mind at the time was set on making his child an extension of himself. The cycle of death and rebirth begins and ends within that to which we give birth. Giving our children a chance before it is too late, we also give a chance to ourselves. By finding it in his heart to extend to his daughter the courtesy his father Fergus never extended to him - by letting Ciri free - Emhyr lets the part of himself that has defined his entire life die. His end stops justifying the means. He breaks the cycle on the edge of the precipice to which he has brought them and thus allows for the possibility of new beginnings for himself and for Ciri.
In a sense, False-Cirilla and Emhyr get the ending Ciri and Auberon might have gotten if –
The story of Auberon Muircetach achieves a fundamentally different resolution.
‘What does the spear with the bloody blade mean? Why does the King with the lanced thigh suffer and what does it mean? What is the meaning of the maiden in white carrying a grail, a silver bowl—?’ - Galahad Lady of the Lake
Galahad asks the questions that the innocent Perceval in his Story of the Grail failed to ask, thus losing his chance at freeing the Fisher King from his curse. And the Fisher King is the guardian of mysteries, among them the Holy Grail. But it is not because of gain that a chivalric knight with a shining sword should seek to free the Fisher King from his curse, but rather because it is a human thing to do. Sapkowski claims to be partial to Wolfram von Eschenbach’s rendition of the Grail myth in Parsifal. Wolfram’s message, according to Sapkowski, is the following:
‘Let’s not wait for the revelation and the command that comes from above, let’s not wait for any Deus vult. Let’s look for the grail in ourselves. Because the Grail is nobility, it is the love of a neighbor, it is an ability for compassion. Real chivalric ideals, towards which it is worth looking for the right path, cutting through the wild forest, where, as they quote, “there is no road, no path”. Everyone has to find their path on their own. But it is not true that there is only one path. There are many of them. Infinitely many. … Being human is important. Heart.’ ‘I prefer the humanism of Wolfram von Eschenbach and Terry Gilliam from the idiosyncrasies of bitter Cistercian scribes and Bernard of Clairvaux…’ - A. Sapkowski Swiat króla Artura: Maladie
The unimaginable sadness in Auberon’s eyes belies the suffering of the Alder King who is the avatar of the Fisher King. In the Witcher’s story between elves and humans, it is the elven males who all share aspects of the Fisher King’s fate, because they are the keepers of their Grail – the protectors of elven women. Auberon’s wound is wrought by time: by surviving his wife and daughter, by the witnessing of the fading of his ambitions and the results of pursuing them without success. He has lost his line. The Fisher King’s injury represents the inability to produce an heir. A ruler who is the protector and physical embodiment of his land, yet remains barren, sterile, or without a true-born successor, bodes ill for the realm. The Alder King’s injury consists in having lost control of the source of his people’s power, leaving the elves imprisoned and scattered across two worlds. Auberon’s personal tragedy, however, subsists in the lost power having been functionally manifest in a daughter.
‘Lara.’ The Alder King moved his head, and touched his neck as though his royal torc’h was garrotting him. ‘Caemm a me, luned. Come to me, daughter. Caemm a me, elaine.’ Ciri sensed death in his breath. - Lady of the Lake
Elder Blood is indeed an accursed blood because it enslaves its carriers to its purpose. Emhyr has a theoretical chance to walk away from the pursuit of earthly power; the construct is social. Elder Blood, however, has a particular and real, magical function, and in virtue of being a genetic mutation it is embedded in the gene-carrying individuals. Functionally, Elder Blood allows to shape fate with degrees of freedom unimaginable for an ordinary individual. It’s a difference comparable to the one between a character in a story and the story’s author. Therefore the Aen Saevherne – the carriers of the gene – are bound to the thing they carry within their DNA that allows them to a greater and lesser degree shape the fate of reality. However dearly Auberon, or Lara, might have ever wished to untie themselves from their own essence, it seems impossible. The loss of control over power then is quite simply so pivotal as to necessitate a moment of original sin.
As already witnessed by way of the legend of the Winter Queen, the original “myths” of the Witcher world usually originate among elves; humans, the interlopers, push themselves into those myths only later. This creates an interesting conundrum. In Parsifal, the Fisher King is injured as punishment for taking a wife who is not meant for him. A Grail keeper is to marry the woman the Grail determines for him, which – if we equate woman with the Grail – is what the woman determines. Unfortunately, we know nothing about Shiadhal, so we cannot verify if this part of the legend dovetails. But generally, in a wholly elven world which may have matriarchal tendencies, in lieu of worshipping the mother Goddess, such cosmology is relatively unproblematic. Except suddenly there are humans too. And Auberon – the highest leader of elves and the father of the new scion of Elder Blood – is indirectly injured because a human sorcerer – Cregennan – turns himself into a Grail keeper (in place of another, special elf) by taking a woman not meant for him.
‘Witcher,’ she whispered, kissing his cheek, ‘there’s no romance in you. And I… I like elven legends, they are so captivating. What a pity humans don’t have any legends like that. Perhaps one day they will? Perhaps they’ll create some? But what would human legends deal with? All around, wherever one looks, there’s greyness and dullness. Even things which begin beautifully lead swiftly to boredom and dreariness, to that human ritual, that wearisome rhythm called life.’ - Yennefer Sword of Destiny
Cregennan’s injury is to die. But what about the original Fisher King figure? What is Auberon’s original sin in this?
I see two possibilities. It could be that Auberon in his ambition hastened his daughter’s way into exile and, in a display of his displeasure, never made any effort to ease his daughter in to the personal sacrifices they, as Aen Saevherne, must make; walking without blinking to the end of the path Emhyr turned away from. It could equally be that Auberon, instead of locking Lara up in a tower to protect her from the folly of youth, let her go to Cregennan. It could be an amalgam of both, and the misjudgement of a father who allows freedom, who feels for his child, and is rewarded with an irreversible injury is probably the greater tragedy.
Because, regardless of the origin of the curse upon Auberon, one thing does not change – the icy eternity in the Alder King’s heart never fractures.
‘‘Zireael,’ he said. ‘Loc’hlaith. You are indeed destiny, O Lady of the Lake. Mine too, as it transpires.’ - Auberon Lady of the Lake
Ciri passes through the shadow world of the Alders; a manifestation of fate. Her footsteps sowing discord and movement and change into the immutable, time-locked amber of the elven utopia. Her presence providing the trigger that will unshackle the past from future in a world where for a long time nothing has changed, died, or been reborn. She is destined and destiny, annihilation and rebirth, the grain of sand in the gears of the great mechanism; a strange girl. The child of hope and the Goddess who ought to be Three. Lara, the true daughter of the Alder King, is dead. Emhyr’s daughter still lives. There is nothing Auberon can do for Lara anymore and thus the ice in Auberon’s heart has crystallised. Emhyr still has a chance; he is where Auberon once was. And yet, there is one thing Ciri, the witcher girl with a sword of her own, can still do for the Alder King.
‘Va’esse deireadh aep eigean… But,’ he finished with a sigh, ‘it’s good that something is beginning.’ They heard a long-drawn-out peal of thunder outside the window. The storm was still far away. But it was approaching fast. ‘In spite of everything,’ he said, ‘I very much don’t want to die, Zireael. And I’m so sorry that I must. Who’d have thought it? I thought I wouldn’t regret it. I’ve lived long, I’ve experienced everything. I’ve become bored with everything … but nonetheless I feel regret. And do you know what else? Come closer. I’ll tell you in confidence. Let it be our secret.’ She bent forward. ‘I’m afraid,’ he whispered. ‘I know.’ ‘Are you with me?’ ‘Yes, I am.’ - Auberon Lady of the Lake
The only way Ciri the Grail knight will be able to find her true self – the Grail – is to cure the suffering Alder King from his curse. Ciri’s presence in the world of the Alders is after all also part of her coming of age story. Through becoming Auberon’s destiny, Ciri must close the circle for him and bring closure. He would never let her go because the shard in Auberon’s heart is no longer able to melt. Auberon does not follow the motif of alleviating the suffering of one’s blood and/or love; and he dies. The roles are reversed, in fact. It is Ciri who realises Auberon is suffering. So Ciri must do what only she can do, because remaining human is important. Heart is important. The sacrifice a ruler makes on the altar of power includes his own heart, which is why there should never be only one, but always two; always.
‘Time is like the ancient Ouroboros. Time is fleeting moments, grains of sand passing through an hourglass. Time is the moments and events we so readily try to measure. But the ancient Ouroboros reminds us that in every moment, in every instant, in every event, is hidden the past, the present and the future. Eternity is hidden in every moment. Every departure is at once a return, every farewell is a greeting, every return is a parting. Everything is simultaneously a beginning and an end. ‘And you too,’ he said, not looking at her at all, ‘are at once the beginning and the end. And because we are discussing destiny, know that it is precisely your destiny. To be the beginning and the end. Do you understand?’ She hesitated for a moment. But his glowing eyes forced her to answer. ‘I do.’ - Lady of the Lake
Death Crone to Auberon Muircetach, Ciri never becomes the Mother Goddess in the Saga. It is a choice she must make for herself and the choice still lies ahead of her. The predicate to making such a choice at least for now, however, she achieves; she goes her own way. In a sense then, both rulers are father figures, who through their choices “beget” the child who is destined. Perhaps this too the Knowing Ones knew, and for this reason Auberon never could have budged, never could have changed his mind in regard to his purpose in the long and winding story of his life. Something is ending, but something is also beginning. A good ruler is responsible for the flourishing of their realm, for providing hope. It is Ciri’s role to be the beginning and the end, and though there might be ways in which to nudge the hand of Fate, whatever is destined must happen. Destiny, however accursed, must run its course.
That is the hope and the release.
submitted by varJoshik to wiedzmin [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:57 Humble-Distance-2461 Help me with the downgrader.

I have been struggling to downgrade gta iv, i have no mods in any way it says i dont so thats not the problem can anyone help, thanks

[12.51.27] [Info] - - - Application Information - - -
[12.51.27] [Info] Downgrader Version: 1.9
[12.51.27] [Info] - - - MD5 Check - - -
[12.51.27] [Info] MD5 Hash Created: 4f1909362ae4aaa908e58b6d3ca32562
[12.51.27] [Info] MD5 Hash Found: 4f1909362ae4aaa908e58b6d3ca32562
[12.51.27] [Info] If both MD5 Hashes don't match: The selected GTA IV Installation might be modified (Contains mods).
[12.51.27] [Info] - - - Downgrading Informations - - -
[12.51.27] [Info] Selected downgrading version: v1070
[12.51.27] [Info] Configure for GFWL: False
[12.51.27] [Info] Selected radio downgrader: SneedsDowngrader
[12.51.27] [Info] Selected vladivostok type: Old
[12.51.27] [Info] Install No EFLC Music in IV Fix: False
[12.51.27] [Info] Install Prerequisites: True
[12.51.27] [Info] Create Backup: False
[12.51.27] [Info] Create Backup in zip file: False
[12.51.27] [Info] - - - Starting Downgrading Process - - -
[12.51.27] [Info] is already downloaded but the file is corrupted. Adding to download queue to redownload.
[12.51.27] [Info] is already downloaded but the file is corrupted. Adding to download queue to redownload.
[12.51.27] [Info] is already downloaded. Skipping.
[12.51.27] [Info] directx_Jun2010_redist.exe is already downloaded. Skipping.
[12.51.27] [Info] vcredist_x86.exe is already downloaded. Skipping.
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Populated download queue list with:, URL:
[12.51.27] [Info] Finished populating download queue list.
[12.51.27] [Info] Starting downloads...
[12.51.27] [Info] Downloading
[12.51.27] [Error] An error occured while downloading item Details: The remote server returned an error: (421) The service is not available, the control connection is closed.
[12.51.27] [Error] An error occured while downloading item The remote server returned an error: (421) The service is not available, the control connection is closed..
[12.51.27] [Info] Downloading
[12.51.27] [Info] Downloading
[12.51.27] [Info] Downloading
[12.51.27] [Info] Downloading
[12.51.27] [Info] Downloading
[12.51.27] [Info] Download of files completed!
[12.51.27] [Info] Installing Visual C++...
[12.52.18] [Info] Visual C++ installed!
[12.52.18] [Info] Extracting DirectX setup files...
[12.52.22] [Info] DirectX setup files extracted
[12.52.22] [Info] Installing DirectX...
[12.52.32] [Info] DirectX installed!
[12.52.32] [Info] Extracting files for Sneeds Radio Downgrader...
[12.52.32] [Error] An error occurred. Details: Central folder is damaged.
submitted by Humble-Distance-2461 to GTAIV [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:54 Mindless-Research-18 Visit the Arbitrum foundation claim page

A brief background

So, let's sum this up. The origins of cryptocurrency go back as far as 1998 and a computer scientist named Nick Szabo who developed Bit gold but, the actual creation of a viable cryptocurrency was ten years later in 2008, by Satoshi Nakamoto, whose whitepaper outlined how a linear, time-stamped network could fuel a cryptocurrency called Bitcoin.
Thus, the coin/currency/token/digital asset (these terms are interchangeable) is stored on the chain — a distributed ledger. The main feature of true cryptocurrency is that there is no central control over the currency, unlike banks or governments. You do, however, get centralized cryptocurrencies where there is a measure of control exerted. Check out this list of centralized and decentralized crypto. The blockchain and Arbitrum Airdrop cryptocurrency industry's overall sentiment and purpose are to be a democratic alternative to traditional currency.

The crypto culture

As you dabble and delve into crypto, you will become very aware that there is a strong community backing this new industry. The community has a powerful ethos and purpose related to individual control of their financial destiny and provides financial access to users that may not qualify for traditional financial services.
Decentralized blockchain networks are chains of validation nodes. These nodes are basically stakeholders that verify transactions. There is no central authority, and the system is set up based on parameters determined by the code upon which the blockchain operates. Several blockchains exist, and they have their own currencies — for example, the Ethereum blockchain fuels the ETH cryptocurrency.
It is worth noting the players involved in the cryptocurrency culture or even subculture.

Un-jumbling crypto wallet jargon

Understanding the background, how the tech was built, and who continues to maintain, participate in, grow and invest in the blockchain and cryptosystem should give you an idea of where or how you want to fit in. So whether you aim to mine crypto with the view to becoming a venture capitalist that supports and funds exciting and innovative projects or if you want to simply trade crypto or perhaps yield farm, everyone has to start in the same place — getting the best crypto wallet. Without a crypto wallet, no transactions can be made.
And that is where this list will begin. It will have a dual purpose in that it will offer an explanation for terms and sequentially transport you along your journey for entering the crypto sphere.

1. Decide on a wallet

Ï Hardware and software wallets Hardware wallets are physical storage devices like an advanced USB that stores your currency. A software wallet is basically like online banking. To access your crypto, which can also be called digital assets, you need to provide the private keys which open access to your currency and give you the ability to transact.
Ï Custodial and non-custodial wallets A custodial wallet is usually run by a central or semi-centralized blockchain, just like a traditional bank. A centralized wallet stores your private key and provides backup and security for your crypto. For some starting in crypto, this can be reassuring.
Non-custodial wallets are software wallets to which you are the only one that has the keys to access the data. No one but yourself has custody of this information, so if you lose the private key information, there is no way to recover the wallet's assets.
A non-custodial wallet can be referred to as a Decentralised Finance or DeFi wallet. This is true decentralization of financial power and responsibility.
One of the best Defi wallets on the market is the Eidoo wallet, which gives you access to a full DeFi ecosystem through their DeFi wallet app, which also integrates a DeFi Visa Crypto Card or the eidooCARD.
Ï Public and private keys In case you hadn't realized as yet, keys are special passwords that are cryptographic. There is a public key that is matched with a private key. Whatever is encrypted with a public key can only be decrypted by the private key. When signing up for the wallet of your choice, you will be guided through the process of securing your keys. It is essential to keep the private key somewhere safe.
Ï KYC — Know Your Customer The blockchain and crypto community, as you know now, are driven by decentralization, protecting privacy, and, to some extent, anonymity. For the most part, the community prefers anonymity, but crypto users, when utilizing a crypto wallet, need to verify their identity when interacting with Fiat, for regulatory purposes. The process of verifying your identity is called KYC and is aimed at curbing illegal financial acts like money laundering, tax fraud and financing terrorism or illegal activities.

2. Buy and trade some crypto

Ï Transaction fees Once you have your wallet, you will be able to buy the cryptocurrency of your choice using fiat. Fiat currency is normal traditional money — the currency of where you live. Any transactions conducted have a fee associated with them just as a normal bank but crypto fees are called gas fees. The Gas price is the amount you pay for every unit of gas just like the cost for a liter of petrol for your car.
These fees enable and power the transactions and are usually paid for in the form of a utility token depending on the blockchain — more about that below under tokens.
Different types of transactions require differing amounts of gas depending on the degree of computational difficulty. Also, the term gas limit refers to how much you are willing to spend on a specific transaction, if you don’t specify enough gas the transaction cant be completed and will fail but because work has been done on the transaction the gas you did specify won't be re-imbursed.
Ï Exchange Usually, you will buy or rather exchange your fiat on a crypto exchange. There are several different exchanges — they are the marketplaces where trading currencies happen almost like a stock exchange or changing your Euros into another currency on the forex exchange. It should be noted that there are centralized and decentralized exchanges, and as in the case of the wallets, the former has a central body that controls it. Simultaneously, the latter is distributed to nodes that uphold a central smart contract, which underpins all exchange operations and has been agreed upon by all stakeholders.
Ï Types of crypto There are so many types of cryptocurrencies available. If you are part of any crypto communities on Telegram or follow crypto enthusiasts on Twitter, then knowing what they are generally referring to is very helpful. For example, Altcoin can't, and won't be found on any exchange. It is a collective name for all coins that are not Bitcoin.
Tokens represent a unit or portion of a cryptocurrency and may be considered securities in some jurisdictions depending on the specific rights of the token holder. Typically when a new cryptocurrency is introduced, parties who are funding the new currency are given tokens representing their participation, or investment.
Don't be confused between security tokens and utility tokens. They are different. Utility tokens are designed to enable certain functions on a project or blockchain platform, also referred to as “gas.” Utility tokens are not necessarily backed by any assets and afford you no rights to dividends, shares of a company, or other ownership. Security tokens, however, are a store of value that are often traded, and meeting the “Howie Test,” and can appreciate (or depreciate) giving the owner asset appreciation and returns from investment. Specifically, the Howey Test determines that a transaction represents an investment contract if "a person invests his money in a common enterprise and is led to expect profits solely from the efforts of the promoter or a third party."
Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies that are linked to the price of another asset or group of assets. This lowers volatility in the market, and usually, the assets linked to the stablecoins are established and quite resistant to price fluctuations. Tether, Goldcoin, PAX and Binance USD are some of the most frequently used stablecoins.

3. Spend your crypto

Once you have stepped onto the crypto pitch with your DeFi wallet app accessible or with your crypto debit card in hand, there are many activities you can undertake, and it really is worth exploring the different investment avenues, opportunities, and crypto mining strategies in play. If you have opted for a wallet that exists within an expansive ecosystem like the Eidoo wallet mentioned earlier, you may have to look no further for an exchange and access to other decentralized finance (DeFi) solutions like lending and borrowing.

4. Track your crypto

At this point it is worthwhile investigating Blockchain explorers - a blockchain explorer is like the Google of the crypto world. Blockchain explorers like Etherscan lets you access the details related to your transactions on specific wallet addresses and blockchains. The details include the amount transacted, where the funds came from or went to and their ongoing status. Explorers make crypto more transparent and are very helpful as you can track payments and you investigate different investments and actions that have taken place on the chain.
It is essential to do your research and reach out to the crypto community who can guide you through these processes. Happy spending and hopefully earning too!
submitted by Mindless-Research-18 to u/Mindless-Research-18 [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:52 Still-Nectarine-9914 A short story of the life of a Vine Voice

Long before August 2022 was a small group of people hand picked by Amazon from around the Amazon trading world for their writing and reviewing skills.
These people were called Vine Voices and were given special privileges in return for testing and writing honest detailed reviews on products new to the market. They were graded and monitored on their performance by the amount of helpful votes they got from prospective buyers (which no longer applies). It was an honour to be a vine voice, one of the selected few. I - like some of you - am one of those vine voices.
Before August 2022, being a vine voice was a responsibility taken seriously. We took pride in our reviews and made every effort to give the best product evaluation that we could according to our experience of it. After all, prospective buyers relied on us to give them an honest account of the products to help them make the right decision.
A vine voice review was trusted and respected because we were honest. We didn't rate a product higher than its worth just because it was free. If it was bad we said so. Hence why authors assigned us the nickname of ... Amazon's assassins.
At first the products were mainly books then came video then gradually other items. The list was sent once a month at the same time on the same day, so everyone would wait in earnest on that day. There wasn't many items but there were far fewer voices also and quite often some of us would miss out and have to wait another month. There were no targets to meet back then though so it wasn't a worry we concerned ourselves with
As time moved on and Amazon progressed, Amazon started to move into the market of technology. Our vine lists started to become more interesting and varied and, more frequent which eventually gave birth to... The Vine Portal
As the vine voice review programme moved quickly forward so did Amazon. Recruiting more sellers with varying products. At first the cost of joining the programme for a seller was high so only big brand name companies could afford to join. The lists of available items for vine voices became more frequent. High value items started to drop into our Rfy lists regularly.
We had time to browse the list and check the details of an item before making a decision. Items would stay on our lists for hours while we 'ummed and arred' whether we wanted it or not. We had time to take measurements, check compatibility and space availability for large items like furniture, tvs, computers etc and the item would still be available on our lists some time later.
It was great, vine was a dream come true for a carefully selected few. Now we had a variety of products to choose from. We could decide not to take that projector or tv because there'll be another tomorrow or the day after . There was no rush.
Then Amazon made a sweeping change. It restructured the costs for sellers to join the vine programme. Thus making it cheaper for medium and small businesses to offer items onto vine while at the same time offering a promotion of free joining fee to new businesses coming on board. That brought about a flood of cheap products into the lists that we affectionately know as ' tat'
My personal experience of vine has been one of an evolving self discovery.
From the time of when I first was invited and thinking " Am I dreaming? Is this real ? ". I felt humbled yet confused that I had been chosen to become one of the privileged few. I hadn't at that time bought much from Amazon and so my reviews were few - however, they were truthful, insightful, concise and compact with details.
As time went by and I amassed more experience of product reviewing I - like others - took great pride in offering the best service for the vine programme. Making every effort to be worthy of the honour and the privilege that had been bestowed upon me.
Each day I would stroll through the lists at leisure and pick out suitable items I liked. Some useful household items some hobby things and some new things to try. Some high value and some not, eagerly awaiting their arrival.
Once delivered I would hurriedly open the boxes - again, eager to try them out. I would push and pull, twist and bend at things to test their durability. If I ordered bakeware I would bake purposely to test the product ( I hate baking by the way). If I ordered paints I would paint a picture to show the results and capabilities of the product. I would make notes as I went along testing the product then finally I would sit and draft out my review before editing for final submission. I enjoyed every second of it all.
I wasn't free from the daily feelings of guilt though. I have been given this wonderful opportunity to obtain items free when everyone I know and the majority of those I don't know have not. It cut through me like a hot knife through butter when someone I knew was struggling financially to get their TV or washing machine fixed. Or to replace a kettle or toaster that just broke. I wanted to help but was bound by ' vine rules ' of not telling anyone that I am a vine voice nor parting with items for 6 months. I could slip them a spare kettle but offering a new tv or washing machine without an explanation as to how I obtained it was - to say the least - somewhat suspicious. I still to this day feel guilt that I am this privileged and others aren't and I fight a constant battle inside daily of wanting to share it all with others less fortunate.
Next came the third quarter of 2022 when Amazon recruited a swathe of new vine voice recruits to - what many of us believe - was to reduce the number of unwanted items that were - by now - building up daily. It was a good business move by Amazon as they only get paid when an item is reviewed so with hundreds of items going un reviewed Amazon were losing a lot of potential spondoolies.
It wasn't such a good move for us ancients though. It meant more competition for the items available because of course, the new recruits weren't going to just take the stuff we didn't want and why would they? They all have as much right to everything as the rest of us. We were all new once. It's only right they play on a fair playing field. Suddenly everything changed. Gone were my days of being able to leisurely stroll through the lists without panic or pressure. Then to top it all Amazon brought in targets and tiers. Vine now became a different beast altogether.
Now I found myself in pool of piranhas in the midst of a feeding frenzy. Gone are the days of taking time to read and evaluate if an item is suitable for what I want. I'm now fighting against thousands of opponents for each morsel. My instinct tells me to step back but my drive to survive says fight. I join the swarm and battle for enough crumbs to keep me swimming in the pool for another day.
As days and weeks go by I find myself more and more consumed with the fight of vine. It used to be a sunny meadow of golden treasures just waiting for the picking. Now it's become a bloody battle ground of winners and losers.
The constant checking the lists throughout the morning, waking early throughout the night in order to hopefully chance on an early drop. Seeing poor quality reviews on high value high end items from other voices everywhere I look degenerating the value of the vine voice program.
Stress and frustration has taken its toll. Vine no longer is the joy it once was. Every morning I found myself putting on the proverbial armour and stepping into war on the vine battle field only to discover it's a never ending war that none of us can ever win. We may achieve victory one day only to lose the next and the next and the next
I decided to to take the advice of my instinct and step back. I hung up my battle armour and sat peacefully watching from the sidelines. Waiting for all participants to exhaust themselves and max out their quota, then I leisurely pick up the late gems that drop in.
My life is no longer a battle for survival in the vine gold tier, I can attain that with enough useful items after the feeding frenzy is over. Nor is it a meadow of gold for the picking - those days are gone for good and will never return, but it belongs to me again and not vine. I get on with my day without thoughts of vine, without the stress and frustration that comes with it now. I have found a piece of the meadow that is untarnished by greed that offers sufficient morsels for my needs. With my back to the battle field I wait patiently for the glisten of a gem to appear. I am at one in peace with vine once again.
submitted by Still-Nectarine-9914 to AmazonVineUK [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:47 CreditMission A Day with a Dog ( a HwP fanfic)

Howdy, thought I'd write a fanfic in its purest form. Taking characters which are not mine and bending them to my will.
Ever since Slanek's little dog problem, always wanted him to have a meet up with the honeybadger. So here we are.
Special thanks to u/Banancake for permission to use Vikri.
Thanks to SP15 for Slanek and the universe.
Warning potential spoilers for Hunting with Predators.
As for Slanek, assuming shore leave post successful evac from Sillis.
Thanks for reading.

Memory transcript: Slanek, Venlil Space Corps
Date [standardized human time]: December 22, 2136
The sky was grey, with white powder raining relentlessly. Thick snow was piled up on the sides of the road which itself had a fine coat; the layered black lines carved by other traffic the only effort keeping it clear. In this weather they would be quickly erased, leaving the long power cable strung between frequent poles the only indicator of the road’s existence. The UN driver accompanying me had been quiet for a while now, focusing hard ahead, gripping the steering wheel despite the autonomous nature of our ride. All I could do was look out and survey the scenery, trying to calm my beating heart as our destination grew closer.
The landscape was muted in shape by its icy covering, only broken by the dark shapes of imposing trees; sometimes sparse, sometimes grouped to form a forest. Despite their stillness, they put me on edge. There were wolves out there, hiding in their shadows. Dogs were terrifying, despite Marcel’s frequent reminders that they were loyal and would not harm me, I could not shake that fear. But wolves, they were big, they were wild, and they were skilled at the hunt. Their existence would not have been tolerated on any other federation planet. Speh! They shouldn’t be tolerated here.
My concern when voiced was brushed off. Just stay in the car they said. Don’t stray from the town. But I had made the mistake of looking them up on the internet and had seen their hideous form. Compared to the terror of their fangs, this car felt awfully flimsy.
Regret once again began to seep in, but I shook it from my head. I refuse to disappoint Marcel again. Time and again my stupid fear of predators gets in the way. I loved Marcel, I accepted his nature. But that wasn’t enough. Tillis proved I had a long way to go before we could be on equal terms. Once again, he forgave me. Understood me. But surely there is a limit. I can’t rely on his kindness forever. I must be better.
As we drove a green sign caught my eye, standing out against the monotonous background. “HAMILTON 17”
A small town, deep in the wilderness. Since the bombing, it had lost a lot of its population due to the collapse of the supply network. Even those far from the bombing were still turned into refugees. However, it had recently served as a rendezvous point for some survivors from the battle of Earth. One, in particular, I had arranged to see.
Driving through town, it was clear some life had returned to it, though you could hardly call it bustling. A lit window here, a pedestrian there. Cars were few and far between. The house that was our destination was on the outskirts, part of the last remnants before the wilderness began. Why would a venlil choose to live in such a dangerous place like this? Is this not the definition of straying from town? A month ago I would have diagnosed this guy with predator disease but now I knew that to be somewhat ignorant. Stars, according to Marcel, I would have predator disease. That label stung, though I couldn’t dismiss it. But I wasn’t broken, was I? Defective? Surely not. Not to him at least. No, I was the best venlil, his words. ‘bout time I actually lived up to that high praise.
Upon pulling up at the house, a venlil came out to greet us. I was thankful to see that his…companion was elsewhere, hopefully secure. His tail curled around him slightly with unease though his ears were relaxed, dipping slightly to acknowledge my approach.
“Greetings Vikri, I’m Slanek. Thank you for agreeing to meet with me,” I gave a respectful ear flick in greeting.
“The pleasure is mine,” he replied, returning the greeting, his lips parting slightly revealing teeth though they were quickly hidden. “I am honoured to meet someone of your acclaim.” Acclaim? Me? “Sorry you had to come all this way but I’m reluctant to travel with her at the moment.”
His companion was why I was here, but to hear such casual reference to it was discomforting. I felt my ears press against my head in response, consciously moving them back to a neutral position.
“Would you like to come in?” He moved to open the door.
“Is…she…” I stammered. He gave a reassuring tail wag.
“She’s in the barn over there,” he said gesturing to a large wooden building some distance away. “Thought we might want to take this slowly. I know how terrifying dogs can be.” He gave a shudder.
Wait, he was scared of dogs too? This doesn’t make any sense. Didn’t he have predator’s disease?
“You’re scared of her?” I asked, incredulous.
“Not now, no. But I was. Terrified.” He looked out to the woods. “We were hunted by them you know. Wolves. Lucky was one of them.” His arms and tail wrapped around his body. “They are terrifying. Their persistence, their violence. They attacked my friends. Nearly ripped their arm off…I can still hear his screaming. See the blood.”
I was at a loss for words
“Then how…why…”
“Why did I befriend her?” He laughed softly. “It’s a long story. Come in. Are you familiar with human tea?”
“I have heard of it,” I replied, moving past him into the building and out of the cold.
The room I entered was sparsely decorated, the furnishings that did fill the meagre space were mismatched and well-worn, with most being of wooden construction. On one wall was what appeared to be a strayu forge constructed of brick, though its opening was at ground level and covered with a metal plate adorned with simple imprints of Terran animals. I sat on a chair made of wood and cloth, perched upon two wooden arches that were unstable by design. Without care it would rock violently, risking the contents of the hot cup handed to me. Vikri occupied the only other chair in the room, notable for having a more respectable 4 legs.
“Have you seen humans hunt?” Vikri asked too casually, causing me to fumble the cup of steaming red liquid I was bringing to my lips. A scorching drop hit my leg.
“Uh, p-persistance hunting correct? Sounds terrifying,” I stammered, rubbing the sore, damp spot on my thigh.
“Not always,” he spoke steadily. “They are…adaptive. Tell me, how do you picture them, as they prepare to kill?”
The image of sharp teeth penetrated my head, moist lips drawn up in a snarl. Their binocular eyes locked on the living creature with hunger as it desperately tried to avoid its gruesome fate. I shook my head to clear it. These visions had finally disappeared after spending so long with Marcel. Why would Vikri reconjure them?
“Fearsome,” I replied. “Delighting in the hunt…like the Arxur.” Even though they still chose to eat meat, I’m glad they had done away with this savage past. Growing it was not dissimilar to plant farming in execution, though the mere thought of it still turned my stomach.
He nodded slowly, staring at me in the eye. A very human gesture.
“Yes, that’s what I expected too. Surely a people built around death would delight in it no?” His gaze softened. “But when the moment came, they were afraid. No blood lust, no savagery. Only quiet resolve” Vikri’s eyes broke contact as he reminisced. “I was scared too. But for them. They needed to do this to survive, and I feel that was the only reason they persevered.”
“You saw them hunt?” I interjected. His ears flicked the affirmative.
“And cook. And eat. It was necessary.” He appeared to study his drink. “But the meat, they enjoyed it. That was confronting. A part of me hoped they wouldn’t. But who was I to speak out against their simple pleasures in the snow and ice. After all they’d done for me.”
“I came to understand the hunters, but that means nothing when you are the prey. Wolfs set upon us, hunting us for hours. Their attacks viscous. Humans were one thing, but these were monsters. It was everything we were taught about predators and more.” He shuddered again.
“In the attack, many were injured. Quarek lost use of his arm. Tenga received life-threatening injuries too.”
I recognised Querek’s name but “Tenga?”
“Uh, he’s a…he was my human. If you understand.” I did.
“We killed a lot of them too, and good riddance I thought. But even after we escaped one kept following. If we had the rounds to spare I would have asked it be shot. But Tenga, he wasn’t like me. He pitied it. She was only trying to survive, like us, he said. Imagine that.” He scoffed. “Compassion for the predators that almost killed you… But he wasn’t wrong.”
“The dog just kept on following us. Devouring any snacks we threw her way but never attacking. It was stressful but if Tenga said she was safe, then I could only believe him. She apparently wanted a pack and the humans welcomed her. Named her Lucky.”
“I was still nervous but then we got attacked by an even bigger predator. A bear. It had me trapped and Lucky ran in to protect me. That dog chose me as someone she needed to protect. How could I dismiss her after that?” He stood up and walked to the window, staring at the barn in the distance. “She’s my partner now. As silly as that sounds. Part of my herd.” He turned back to me, his tail flicking in excitement, his ears showing apprehension. “So, do you still want to meet her?”
Walking through the snow was an odd sensation. It stuck to my legs and penetrated my fur. My feet were quickly sapped of their heat but at least the air temperature was quite tolerable. My posture was hunched with my tail curled around me, but not from the cold.
Vikri ambled ahead, an ever so slight limp to his gait but otherwise confident, a small pouch was attached to a strap around his waist. It wasn’t long before we stood before imposing wooden doors. I heard a faint scratching and panting from the other side.
“I’ll go in first and keep her calm. I’ll call you when we’re ready.” With familiarity, he unlatched the door and cracked it open. A moist snout quickly appeared through the gap which he gently redirected inside before squeezing himself in.
“Good girl, good girl. We’re going to meet a friend so best behaviour alright.”
The sound of panting intensified as I heard movement from within.
“Ok, when you are ready,” he called out.
“Oh, Stars!”
With tentative movements I approached the gap, squeezing my head in to survey.
Next to Vikri sat a fearsome creature reaching up to his chest in height, covered in gray and white fur. Its maw hung open showing its moist pink tongue and many sharp teeth. The only thing restraining it was a thin strap held firmly in Vikri’s paws.
“Arf!” it barked.
I stumbled backwards, falling into the snow. The impact sent sharp pains through my injured shoulder, a seeping cold reaching my rear.
“You okay?” A concerned voice called out.
“Ah, yes, I’m fine. Ju-just stay in there okay,” I whimpered. Get a hold of yourself Slanek! You’ve faced down arxur for stars sake.
Gingerly righting myself, I approached again. With a few deep breaths, I shut my eyes and hastily stepped into the barn, closing the door behind me. No retreat!
Upon opening my eyes, I was greeted by the sight of the pair in the same position I left them.
“Just walk up to me Slanek. You’re completely safe,” Vikri encouraged, gently stroking the dogs head. The dog’s eyes remained locked on me.
Alright, confidence soldier. Forward march.
Keeping them both in focus I approached, the dog pivoting its head as it tracked me.
Reaching Vikri I froze. I could touch the dog if I wanted.
“Okay, reach out and place your paw on the back of her neck,” Vikri prompted.
I slowly complied, gently making contact with the dogs fur. It was coarser than I expected. As I dug in deeper I could feel the body heat. The dog craned its head back to look at me, making a quiet whine in their throat.
“Very good, she likes it. You can touch her head too.”
I moved my hand up, the softness of the scruff giving way to the more solid bone. Their ears depressed slightly as I pushed them down, but I was very gentle, ears could be sensitive. I was resting my hand on the top of a predator’s head, just above their golden binocular eyes that were staring into mine. I was ok.
“Good girl,” I said tentatively. I caught Vikri’s approving tail flick.
“Want to hold the leash?” he offered. “Take her for a walk.”
This was progressing fast. Could I control a predator?
“I’ll try.” Vikri pressed the strap in my hand and took half a step away.
Despite the slackness in the strap, the dog remained seated, her head snapping to follow her master.
“Up!” he said, and she rose to all fours. “Good girl,” he praised, pulling a small item from his pouch and offering it to her with open paw. The dog moved towards him, jolting my arm slightly as I moved to follow. Their pink tongue shot out and secured the morsel, their jaws closing and chewing with an audible crunch.
“Is that bone?” I asked, disgusted.
“Just a biscuit,” he replied, offering one to me. I grabbed it and on inspection, it was a small dry square that was a dark red colour. It appeared to have been baked hard, but not so much that it couldn’t be broken by teeth.
“It does contain meat though, so don’t eat it.” I felt my stomach shift, as I held it as far away from me as possible, barely resisting the urge to throw it away. The dog saw this as an opportunity and deftly snatched it from my paw before I could even register what was happening.
Crunch, crunch
All that remained was a slightly damp patch on my pad as a shiver went up my arm and resonated throughout my body.
“All right! Let’s go!” Vikri headed towards the door, his tail wagging in amusement. Lucky followed him, dragging me stumbling behind. The answer was no. I could not control a predator.
Vikri walked with purpose, casually waving greetings to anyone we passed, be they in car or on foot. Lucky paced along beside him with me on her other flank, the leash slack between us. He was in a different league from me in embracing human customs, even after I had come so far with Marcel. A feeling of defeat crept in, but I kept it at bay. I was expecting this. It was why I had pursued this meeting.
The fallen snow thickened and the thinning signs of civilisation fell behind us, trees becoming more common. This was definitely straying out of town.
“Aren’t there wolves out here?” I asked nervously, ears high and alert.
“Not this close to town. To many humans,” he replied matter of fact. “Just wild enough to have fun.” He stopped, surveying the surroundings. “Want to set her loose?”
“Huh?” He gestured to lucky with his tail.
“Unclip her leash and let her frolic,” he clarified. What a terrifying notion, but if I didn’t trust him what was the point of me coming? My paws fumbled with the mechanism attaching the leash to her collar, eventually disconnecting it. For a few seconds she sat there, indifferent to the lack of restraint until Vikri gave her an energetic pat.
“Go!” he barked, and a grey-white blur shot off into the snow, remarkably quiet considering the speed. Suddenly she faltered, tumbling into a bank, sending white powder flying. Rolling around to right herself, she sped off again until she found another suitable snow bank to throw herself into. Vikri watched on with a relaxed expression.
“Care to join her?” He asked. I marked my incredulity to him, but he dismissed it. With a loud yelp he ran after her, throwing himself into a previously disturbed snow pile. Instantly the dog was upon him, digging and barking, Vikri’s limbs flailing as he contended with his attacker. My heart leapt into my throat as the nightmare unfolded. Reaching instinctively for my sidearm, my fear began to turn to panic on realisation it wasn’t there. What do I do? Run? No! I’ve got to help. But how? I was frozen.
After a short tussle, Vikri easily pushed her off, sending her running in another direction. The now patchy white venlil returned to my side, breathing heavily.
“She’s so full of energy,” he wheezed, ignoring my frozen expression of terror.
“You’re incredible,” I responded, trying to regain my composure. To shrug off an attack like that. Even if Marcel did something similar to me I fear how I’d react, and I knew him to be sapient and kind.
“Hardly,” he dismissed, “I’ve just had to learn.” He took a moment to catch his breath.
“Thank you for coming Slanek.” His sudden gratitude caught me off-guard. “It means a lot.”
“You’re the one helping me,” I reminded.
“Yes, but you reached out. To a broken venlil like me.” He looked at me and bared his teeth in an attempt at a human smile.
“You’re held in high regard, it’s how I heard about you.”
“By humans maybe,” he clarified. “Doubt most venlil will be understanding. Only the bravest.” He nudged me with his tail.
“Marcel seems to think I have predator disease, so I don’t think anything I do should give you much comfort,” I confessed.
“Do you think you have predator disease?” he asked, staring at me.
“No…I… uh…it’s complicated. I thought it. I was normal, I think.” He didn’t break his gaze. There was a pit in my stomach, Marcel’s recent criticisms stinging anew.
“I don’t know anymore. I want to believe I’m the same, normal venlil that left Venlil Prime, but I know that can’t be true. It hurts.”
Vikri stopped staring, focusing more on the dog as it played.
“I always thought it was something you were born with, a defect,” he paused. “Now I fear it’s more a contagion.”
“Exterminators were always concerned about predator corruption spreading,” I added, images from Tillfish flamethrowers worming their way into my head. “Hang with predators and you’re bound to catch something.”
“Do you think I have predator disease?” He asked. Despite the seriousness of tone, it almost made me smile. That was my diagnosis from the start. But maybe not the worst thing.
“It colours your fur. Too much human’s rubbed off on you.” This time I gave him a playful nudge. Despite my indication of joking, Vikri remained pensive, still just watching for the dog. Trying to catch his eye, I flicked an apology, “Sorry, I don’t think you’re sick…really.”
“No, no,” he responded, moving an eye back to me. “To be honest I want that. To acknowledge them changing me and all. Otherwise, what was the point?” His gaze drifted back to Lucky. “No, I am different now. He changed me and I can never go back. It’s all I have left of him now anyway.” The last part almost disappeared into a whisper. I sidled up to him in support, wrapping my tail around his. I felt sick at the sorrow he must be experiencing, for it was what I feared most.
“I’m sure he’s proud of what you’ve become.” I encouraged.
“Un” Vikri gave an affirmative flick.
“Raising a dog for star’s sake. He’d definitely think you are the best venlil.”
“And for the little it’s worth, I do too.” He didn’t respond directly to that one, but he did press in closer.
“I do miss my old life though,” he continued after some time, his voice recovering. “Though I don’t think I’ll ever go back to Prime. Not with her.”
I shrugged. “There are currently thousands of humans on Prime. We can only pray to the stars that predator disease is as contagious as we’ve experienced,” I chuckled softly.
“Wouldn’t that be something,” he mused.
I was hopeful. Humans had lived up to our greatest fears. They were manipulative, changing whatever they touched to their own ideal. And stars if they weren’t persistent. Once you were their prey, they would not stop until they had you. The evidence was here. Two venlil, standing on an alien world, happily watching an apex predator play before us. Changed forever by the nature of predators.
submitted by CreditMission to u/CreditMission [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:45 dunkurs1987 [ASK NC] Nas set up

[HELP] Hello Andrew Further to your response on 24th February 2023 I have purchased a Terramaster t9-423 (got it at £550 - normal retail was £900). Ive added a crucial p3 M2 nvme 1 tb plus extra 8gb ram (total 16gb) and 4 x 16tb Seagate Ironwolf Pro hard drives. Also have the mini memory stick sandisk 32gb. I have Not switched on the machine yet. The NAS will be primary used for home media server utlising PLEX. If I wish to go via UNRAID route do I : A) switch on machine and load terramaster OS (TOS 5?) then add Unraid afterwards OR B) Just go straight to Unraid If its Option A at what point do i install Unraid? If its Option B can I install Unraid on a brand new machine not setup? Or is there an alternative option? Your help is welcome. Many thanks Gulam
from - Data Storage Blog
submitted by dunkurs1987 to NAScompares [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:43 Salt-n-Ice I took this photo years ago but it still pisses me off

I took this photo years ago but it still pisses me off submitted by Salt-n-Ice to antiwork [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:32 theillusionisover Pokémon games in an alternate timeline

Here is how Pokémon games could have differed in an alternate timeline in another universe:

November 2016: Pokémon Sun and Moon
• Pokémon Sun and Moon and USUM release as one game. To make it possible, the game scales back on gimmicks from USUM like Mantine Surfing, but we get Ultra Worlds, the Ultra Necrozma story, Team Rainbow Rocket and a bonus Zygarde story.
• Zygarde no longer appears in X/Y (MewTwo takes Zygarde's place in the cave).
• The climax of the game would merge USUM's with SM's story. After defeating a Lusamine merged with Nihilego, Necrozma appears appears and captures Solgaleo/Lunala, fusing with it. After being battled, it steals Alola's light and disappears into an Ultra Wormhole. The Ultra Recon Squad appear and you travel through Ultra Space to Ultra Megalopolis and face Necrozma.
• In the postgame, you face off against Team Rainbow Rocket, and unlock the ability to travel to Ultra Worlds freely.
• As for the Zygarde storyline, you will be given a cute Zygarde cell by a now older Dexio, who says he found it in Kalos (it still appears in anime) and believes it grows by absorbing either sun light (Pokémon Sun) or moon light (Pokémon Moon).
• While you can't battle with it, you can interact with and pat the Zygarde cell in Pokémon-Amie.
• In order to have it grow, you need to stand in spots around the region where the sun or moon light shine particularly bright. These aren't too hard to spot. Once you've absorbed enough light, the cell will grow into 10% forme. You need to absorb even more light for Zygarde 10% forme to be battle-ready.
• As Zygarde grows, Dexio will meet with you and monitor it. He notices it can regrow some dead plants in his lab. will also notice the growing bond between you and Zygarde. This mirrors the bond Lillie has with Cosmog.
• Once Zygarde reaches 50% forme (only possible in postgame) it will disappear to chase some Ultra Beasts that are disrupting the ecosystem. (These certain Ultra Beasts are only accessible via this storyline) You will fight with the aid of Zygarde, which will use the ecosystem around it to drain the Ultra Beast's powerful auras.
• Once you've defeated all the beasts, Zygarde can turn into its 100% forme. In its ultimate form, it will restore all the damage made to the ecosystem of Alola.
Other notes: To tie a loose end, an NPC mentions the unused train station in Couriway Town (Pokémon X and Y) is a remnant of a Kalos's old regional train network. It is there as a town landmark.

November 2017: Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu/Eeevee
• Instead of another Sun and Moon game, which repeats a lot of the same story, Pokémon LGPE launches on Switch. It launches just a month after Mario Odyssey releases.

Apr 2018: Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu/Eevee Expansion Pass
Pokémon LGPE release a Johto expansion pass in Apr 2018. (Preorders begin in early January)
Depending on your game version, you can purchase either the Gold or Silver Pass.
You can access Johto via the Route 22 gate, even if you've just started LGPE.
• From the Route 22 gate, a driver takes you via car through a new path being constructed to Johto. You go the remainder of the way, through the cave gateway, until you reach New Bark Town.
• Lyra or Ethan will greet you. They have just moved into the previous main player's house. They want to introduce you to the professor. Prof. Elm asks you to deliver a Pokémon Egg to Mr. Pokémon. You discover the egg is rare, foreshadowing it will hatch into one of the Johto starters. (It will be the opposite type to your chosen Kanto starter)
• The other 2 Johto starters can be obtained in the Safari Zone later on.
• In the next city over, Cherrygrove City, rather than meeting a tour guide, Lyra/Ethan will touch base with you and hint the path to Mr. Pokémon's house.
• After meeting Mr. Pokémon, Lyra/Ethan appear and tell you heard Prof. Elm has been robbed, and they will escort you back to the lab. You will encounter rival Silver on the way, who will send Lyra/Ethan spinning away. You battle them, then go to the lab to name your rival and receive the egg from Prof. Elm. The storyline carries on quite similarly to HG/SS from this point forward.
• The Battle Frontier is replaced by the Master Tower, where you can request a battle with Master Trainers, all in one place.
• The Game Corner is replaced by a Style Shop in Goldenrod City, where you can buy a range of outfits. You are also gifted several new outfits with the Expansion Pass.
• A slight alteration, Giovanni's disappearance is more recent.
• You also encounter Red at Mt Silver instead of Indigo Plateau.
• The Safari Zone is now a place where a mix of Pokémon from Kanto and Johto can be battled. It is promoted as an ideal place to train Pokémon if you are taking on the Master Tower.
• You can catch either Ho-Oh or Lugia depending on your game pass.
• As there is no time jump, you can battle the new Elite Four members from HGSS - Will and and Karen - in the Master Tower.
• Once you've obtained the final badge, you can battle Lance in the Dragon's Den. You can also return to team up with Silver to battle Lance and Clair.
• Like in HGSS, Suicine is ultimately caught in Kanto. Suicine's location will appear on the map. You will encounter Euisine when you find it.

Nov 2018: Pokémon Sword and Shield
Pokémon Sword and Shield are announced in late February, a month after preorders of Pokémon LGPE begin. When the game is released, Game Freak clearly state that more Pokémon will become available in future updates.
• The graphics are similar, though use lighter, more smoothed out surfaces like in Scarlet/Violet.
• The Wild Area is more enjoyable to traverse. You can now slide down slopes, and explore a couple new caves.
• The Galarian Star Tournament is included in the base game, and unlocked after becoming the champion.
• In the postgame story, there will be a few cutscene showing the large Dynamax'd Pokémon rampaging around. You will be able to see the huge Pokémon in the distance as you approach the gym.
• Following Pokémon are not implemented in the Sword/Shield Expansion passes.

Nov 2019: Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl
• A more complete game preview is presented in February, including the Grand Underground, Secret Base Decorations, and a mission with Looker.
• The graphical style falls somewhere between LGPE and this timeline's BDSP. It is still faithful to the original world, while not being overly married to it (like repeating the same blocky trees). The visuals are built upon to make the world feel richer.
• The game bases its designs and storyline on D/P, rather than Platinum. e.g. the Galactic building is not so ostentatious like in Platinum, but low-key. Rather than trying to remake Platinum, it enhances D/P well enough that a Platinum remake isn't necessary.
• That being said, there is a new postgame quest involving Looker and Charon, who don't appear in the main story, and a more cinematic cutscene at Spear Pillar.
Spear Pillar Cutscene
where you see Cyrus's new world forming and the Lake Trio get into a skirmish with Dialga/ Palkia. They dodge Dialga/Palkia's mighty attacks, as we see people from around the region look up at the lightshow atop Mt. Coronet. (This fits in with the opening credits which shows lightning atop Mt. Coronet)
• Barry also stays by your side rather than running away.
• The cutscene furthermore builds up tension by having Dialga/Palkia about to strike you, when Mespirit launches a sneak attack, crumbling the Red Chain to ashes. Continuing the cinematic cutscene, Cyrus unleashes his rage and immediately begins the battle. As you battle him, the mighty Dialga/Palkia and you friends (including Dawn and Rowan) are seen watching in the background. Cyrus has more dialogue cut-ins during the battle, enraged that you are protecting a world that only lets people down.
Post - game Looker story
• Looker greets you at your house in the postgame, and tells you about remnants of Team Galactic hiding underground. You can either go to Snowpoint City to board the ferry or begin the Looker mission. You will help Looker track down a variety of Team Galactic bases hidden underground, which appear to be run by an evil scientist.
• Team Galactic are setting up machinery to monitor Mysterious Shards (which can be used to find legendary Pokémon at Ramanas Park), and are disturbing the wild Pokémon, as well as even kicking people out of their secret bases. You will also meet Mars and Jupiter underground, who agree to side with you to help thwart Charon's evil plans.
• A throwback to Platinum, Looker will disguise himself to corner and capture Charon.
Mars and Jupiter will move on, and Team Galactic will be done.
New Features
• Decorations appear in Secret Bases, replacing Statues.
• Certain kinds of Decorations can affect the kinds of Pokémon that appear in hide-aways.
Catching Giratina
• It's easier to obtain Origin Form Giratina - simply capture or defeat Giratina in Turnback Cave, and a Distortion Slate will drop.
• Take it to Ramanas Park, and enter the Distortion Room. The Distortion Room is now expanded into a passageway. The passageway shows off some cool visuals, as you make your way to Shadow Giratina and the orb.
Super Contests
• Pokémon now use their Moves during the contest. You can choose to perform to boost your points. As you hit the dance notes, your Pokémon moves in response, making Super Contests feel much more interactive.
• Fans will also gather in the hall after you win contests, including familiar faces.
• You can navigate up and down through apps.
Platinum teams
• All trainer teams, wild Pokémon and the Pokédex reflect the appearances in Pokémon Platinum. You can now battle Fantina as the third gym leader, or choose to skip past her to the next gym.
Battle Tower
• You can instantly battle familiar trainers from all around the region, including gym leaders and Stat trainers, by asking the attendant to request them. You don't need to build up a streak of 49 battles just to battle certain trainers (like Stat Trainers).
Following Pokémon
• All following Pokémon follow you closely, and larger Pokémon appear somewhat larger to reflect a large appearance.
submitted by theillusionisover to pokemon [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:26 Sweet-Association-95 AppleScript

I’m building a bot that uses the OpenAI api for responding in iMessage to a specific appleid, so far I’ve gotten up the messages that arrive and generated a response to them but in the python script I have I also use AppleScript to automate the process working with iMessage.. do anyone have any knowledge about sending messages with AppleScript? The terminal returns “error -10002 invalid key” at this point and I’ve given the terminal access to everything so I don’t think access is a problem…
submitted by Sweet-Association-95 to learnprogramming [link] [comments]

2023.03.26 12:26 ShadowDragon8685 [Ace is the Only Sane Pirate 13]Doctor Dick Feynman, I presume?

Ace was stunned. She almost felt disassociated from her own scaled hide; mentally she was still processing, even as, somehow, she found herself smoothly walking down the ramp to the navigation console, relieving the human who was at it.
She recovered quickly as she found herself reviewing the controls. They were all laid out, smooth and reasonably intuitively so. It wasn't even that she was entirely unfamiliar with taking command of a capital starship; she had, from time to time, taken the captain's post of the Arcadian Endeavour, to say nothing of the helm, but still, she was gobsmacked that Najia trusted her so readily as to just ask her to take the helm.
She looked the controls over again. The ship seemed ready to sail. "The helm is operative," she said. She was, however, unfamiliar with the ship class; fortunately, her station included a comprehensive overview. As Large vessels went, it was on the small size; the Arcadian Endeavour would handily outgun it; two Large Pulse Turrets, eight Medium Bolt turrets, and, on her stick, 2 'Medium Meson Streams'. She was vaguely familiar with Meson Streams as being the Protectorate's special signature weapon, but she thought that M weapons might be a bit lightweight to be the 'main armament' on an L vessel. "All systems seem to be reporting operational."
Ace looked uncertainly at the human woman standing the gunnery console next to her. She, too, had a slightly uncertain look, but, after a moment's double-checking, nodded firmly. "Gunnery confirms, all stations reporting green, C-Captain," she said, looking back up at Najia, who nodded firmly. "Ace, take us out. Let's track down Boso Ta's mysterious interloper."
Ace nodded firmly, and throttled the Destroyer-class vessel in reverse. The ship accelerated with surprising speed; nothing at all like the ponderous heft of the Empyrean Curs' home. The mammoth headquarters station receded into the distance, and she made a slight hiss to clear her throat. "We are away, Najia. We should begin scanning for this interloper if you wish to locate them." "Right. That's... Actually on this console," Najia recalled after a moment, her hands flying over the console. She'd done this before, a few times, but she still felt like such an imposter standing on the bridge of a ship this large and giving orders, even though she could - and did - order fleets of such ships around. Still, the long-range sensors came up, and in moments a ping found itself. She pushed it to Ace's station. "Let's go see who, or what, is creating such a fuss around here," she said. She felt vaguely self-conscious, running down what was probably some Teladi smugglers with a high-powered transmitter rig in some M freighter with a fast escort frigate.
Ace, meanwhile, was quite enjoying herself. The ship she was testing was spritely, responsive, without having the ponderous over-steer problem the Baku-class M Freighters had. Even the mighty Terran engines couldn't push a ship this large into T-drive immediately, but in regular drive it accelerated and decelrated rapidly. She quickly brought the ship to the appropriate course to intercept the sensor return, and, swooping past the headquarters station on course, activated her Travel drive. As with any large vessel, there was a considerable charge-up period while the ship's engines built power. However, it was rather less considerable than that of most ships in its class. She had time for a glance at the shipyard slips, and noted that a very large ship was under construction, and quite rapidly too - from its lines, it could only be one of old Professor Nakagawa's Nagoya-class Battleships. Ace found that amusing; Najia's people certainly worked fast.
The ship took off with suddenness that surprised her, the pitch of the T-Drive warmup reaching its crescendo. All attention back to the fore, Ace sucked in a sharp breath as they accelerated, rapidly intercepting the interloping signal. It wasn't hiding very well, Ace thought; if indeed it intended to hide at all. She targeted it as soon as it was within range; to the bridge the computer announced "Okinawa: Research Vessel."
Najia groaned audibly, glancing down; there was a transponder with a name. Oberth. "Dick Feynman," she muttered to herself, suddenly feeling a welling-up of outrage. What, she wanted to know, was Dr. Feynman doing in her system, lurking around her anomalies, without so much as dropping by to say hello? Woah girl, Najia thought to herself, taking a half-step back and a deep breath, wondering where that outburst had come from. Then she thought back to all the tiny little microaggressions Professor Feynman had bestowed upon all of his students; to say nothing of his research assistants. She snorted, loudly, as Ace pulled the Koshirae up alongside the Oberth, and she commed it. The skipper's face appeared on-screen.
"Yes; this is the research vessel Oberth. Can we help you?" Najia nodded to him. "Please put me in contact with the commander of your expedition," she said, firmly but politely. "Very well, one moment." The captain passed her through without further comment; he was clearly annoyed with the professor, since he didn't seem to recognize her, but he was still passing a random passer-by - in a destroyer admittedly - straight to the Professor.
Moments later, the professor himself appeared in the comms window, also on the bridge; just as she recalled him from before. "I am Dr. Rick Feynman, Chief Scientist of the Oberth and in charge of Project Genesis," he said, annoyedly and hurriedly. Najia waited for the other shoe to drop. It did so in a few moments, and he gawped openly at her. "Wait, Najia Takio?! Is it really you?" Najia smirked. "In the flesh, Professor." Unsaid, was that he hadn't even tried to contact her. He was either as oblivious as the Maestro of the Empyrean Curs, or he hadn't wanted to contact her. She was actually betting on the former. "Well, I'm glad you made it," he said. "We didn't expect biological matter to have survived this transition."
Najia blinked, and felt disassociated for a moment; she could just about feel the weightlessness of being cast adrift in her suit again. He had expected the transition, and hadn't warned her, or any of the others he had sent out in suits - whose fates she still didn't know? She was on the verge of exploding at him, quite possibly more literally than figuratively, but he continued on speaking blithely. "As I was saying, we are looking into how this station got here. Our research vessel is currently observing anomalies and gravimetric shears in this region."
That's it? That's... It? Najia felt stunned, and she shook her head. She felt on the verge of a schoolgirl explosion of anger, but looked to her side. Marta looked just as furious as she did, but she was maintaining. Selaia, the shipyard temporary master, was standing ramrod-straight, disciplined. Composed, with military bearing. Najia filed that away to ask her about later, but she looked back to the comms panel, and willed herself to the composture that Captain Kevlin had adopted. Be like her, she told herself. The Commander.
"Professor Feynman, I think it's time you told me exactly what Project Genesis is; after all, I almost died for it." There was a blink. He had, at least, the good graces to look somewhat embarrassed. "I'm sorry to inform you that you currently lack the required clearance to access that information, Najia."
Najia had very minimal military training; just the three-week Segaris reserve militia training course that every Pioneer university student got. Between that and the example of Captain Kevlin standing to her side with her feet braced proudly, her face schooled and her arms crossed behind her back as an example, however, Najia managed not to erupt in fury. Below, she saw Ace's tail lash in agitation, but Ace, too, was remaining face-forward, eyes on her controls.
"Is there anything else, Ms. Takio?" Najia considered laying down all the reasons she felt she should be granted clearance to access that information, ranging from the fact that her ships and her production facillities were providing the majority of the Pioneers' construction supplies and she had fantastic trading relations with them, to - again - the fact that she'd almost died for the project - to the fact that, within five minutes, she could have a fleet - a literal fleet of warships training their guns on Oberth.
That last one was, she thought, an argument most compelling. Part of her - a part of her she quickly pushed down - was inclined to simply order the boarding ships in-system to seize the research vessel Oberth by force and have Dr. Feynman dragged before her in irons. That was a sentiment every university student who'd ever had to deal with an insufferable professor would certainly sympathize with. She very much doubted that anyone she knew would even object, but she simply took a deep breath, letting it out slowly.
"In that case, Professor, what are you doing here; what do you need?" She somehow managed to maintain the composure she was projecting, she thought; though if she could involuntarily kill with her eyes over a comm screen, she was sure he'd fall dead with his head vaporized to a stump. Obliviously, or else with such a remarkable degree of awareness that he pretended to be oblivious, Dr. Feynman brightened and said, "we are currently lacking antimatter cells we need to complete our observations. If you can organize a delivery to this vessel, we'll be able to greatly advance our timetable."
Najia nodded, curtly, and cut the comm channel. She let out the seething huff she wasn't aware she had been holding in, and took a step back. "Captain, you have the Conn," she said, quietly. "I have the Conn," Captain Kevlin said, taking the center console as Najia walked to the aft railing of the 'smoke pit,' taking it in her hands and squeezing for a long few moments. "There's a conference room aboard, ma'am, if you need long-range communications capability," the captain said to her, with a glance over her shoulder. "Also, your two personal S-class craft were loaded onto our pads before you arrived. Should you require them." Najia recognized what the Captain was saying to her; she was semi-subtly suggeting that Najia take her anger somewhere the crew couldn't see it. Najia half-seethed at that, but she recognized the wisdom - and nodded. "Thank you, Captain. I do need the comms, in fact. Ace, Marta, with me please."
"I could kill him," Najia said, the moment the door closed behind her. Marta, ahead of her, sat on the edge of the conference table and snorted. The room was essentially a copy of their ships' standardized mess halls, but without the kitchen. "You and me both. Sanctimonious little..." "Why do you not, then," Ace asked, turning a chair around and sitting in it, drawing her feet up to the edge of it, curling her tail around her legs. "He has clearly given you cause for outrage; not mere ire or annoyance, but clear outrage. He is also utterly oblivious to the fact that, whatever you were relative to him when last you met, you are, now, the master of a vast organization and due far more respect - and information - than he provided. The Maestro would likely order his ship siezed, that he himself be seized, respect beaten into him, and then have brought before him in chains to answer the questions he refused to answer before."
Najia paused for a moment, and leaned back on the wall of the conference room, taking a deep breath, huffing and letting it out slowly, hugging herself self-consciously. Less the 'ordering a beating to a prisoner' part, she had considered that very course of action. "Is that what you want me to do, Ace?" Ace let out a soft, hissing trill, and shook her head. "No. That would be... Very out-of-character for you, I think." She blinked at that, unsure why she didn't want to see Najia order that course of action, when it was what her piratical upbringing was telling her that Najia should do - would be within every right to do.
"Yeah, well... I considered it," Najia said, "less the beating part, anyway." "He's keepin' secrets from you. Spook stuff," Marta pointed out. "Considering how you almost died in the name of this Project Genesis, you damn well deserve some answers. Frankly, I wouldn't blame you in the slightest if you did order the ship seized and searched for those answers. And if we took Doc Dick prisoner in the process, well... I mean, I wouldn't, you know, condone it if you happened to say that they shouldn't be too concerned with being gentle when they grabbed him, I don't think I'd raise a fuss about it, either."
Najia broke into a laugh, and then face-palmed, sighing heavily, and grinning. "No. As cathartic as it might be..." She sighed, heavily. "As deeply, deeply cathartic as it might be..." She trailed off, then shook her head vehemently. "No. He is a prick, though." Marta snorted. "No arguments from me there. I can't tell you how many times I daydreamed about force-feeding him his own lectern in class." She smirked at Najia. "And I know you felt the same way."
"Mmmhmm. So, fie." She pushed off from the wall, sat in the chair next to Ace, and pulled up the comms, back to the station, intending to explain the matter to Boso Ta. The Boron's head appeared in hologram above the table. "Ah, Assistant! It appears that they are researching the same anomaly which brought the station over here," Boso Ta said, preempting her. He continued on, quickly, "Most of the gravimetric charge dispersed during that event, but they brought quite an array of equipment to examine the traces. Let us hope that this satisfies their curiosity and leads to their departure." Najia snorted at that. "Don't bet on it. I know this asshole, he's... Well, he's up to something. I'll arrange to deliver him the stuff he wants and get this moving, but, don't get your hopes up." She sighed, and decided to be nicer to Boso Ta, if only because she had been reminded of just how not-nice Dr. Feynman had been to her. "Is there anything else you need, Boso Ta, that we can act on at present?"
"Ah, yes," Boso Ta said, brightly. "We are prepared for teleportation trials to begin. Well, we have already tested them," he admitted, "with nonsapient life forms; your Professor Nakagawa is quite the researcher. He and Station Manager Peterson have quite ably assisted my research here whilst you were off endeavoring in Avarice. We've been waiting to offer you the opportunity to be the first sapient teleportation subject of our revived teleport project."
Najia blinked. "Well..." She paused, and huffed, and the table's comm system chirr-upped. It was Peterson, and Najia added her to the conference call. "Tsukiko, what's this about me being a guinea pig?" Tsukiko let out a huff, interrupted in the middle of something she was about to say; her shoulders slumped, and she grinned, wryly. "Okay, not really a guinea pig," she said. "We've tested it in-system with mice, and dogs. We sedated them first," she said, "and then sent them through un-sedated, too. No ill effects we could find. I hate to say it, but Boso Ta is... Kind of a genius."
Najia held back a snort at that, and Tsukiko smirked at her. "So, it's safe, as near as anyone can tell?" "Oh yes. There's no evidence of any sort of atomic or molecular irregularities in scans of the animals taken on either side of the teleport, and a veterinary specialist who examined the animals before and afterwards indicated there was no sign of any lasting trauma from the experience," Boso Ta interrupted. "I felt that being the first sapient to go through the system would be your due, for the work you've put in to bringing us to the point where it is possible. Najia Takio; first human to use a teleport intentionally... Developed by us, anyway."
Najia snorted at that, and smirked. "I'll think about it. Do we need to retrofit anything?" "Oh, no," Tsukiko said. "Or, rather - and this is actually kind of mind-blowing - the actual teleport hardware itself is... Frankly miniscule. There is a refit needed, but it's already been done; we just started fitting them into the lifts of larger ships and the airlocks of Small-classes."
Najia blinked at that. She hadn't even known about it? "As a standard...?" "Indeed, as a standard option! This would, needless to say, greatly simplify personnel transfer logistics."
Najia laughed at that, and looked at Ace. Ace was stroking her crest, and looked... Thoughtful. Marta looked fascinated. "Shit, Ninja Taco, if you ain't gonna go for it, I will. But what'd you want, Professor Peterson?" Tsukiko laughed, blushing slightly. "Please, Marta, how many times do I have to tell you to just call me Tsukiko? You're harder to break of that habit than Najia was. Anyway, I called because the Golden Flea and the ship Ninja Taco are getting coded comms signals from the Empyrean Curs."
Ace let out a high-pitched trill at that. "Please, you must tunnel the comm from the Flea here with all haste." Tsukiko punched a button on her desk, out of view, and a holographic comms-panel came up in front of Ace. Ace studied it - it looked to Najia like gibberish - for a moment. "This is the recall signal. Maestro wants us back on the Arcadian Endeavour immediately, unless we are presently under surveillance by the authorities." Ace looked back to her. "It looks like the Maestro has his plans aligned and is ready to do something adventuresome."
Najia took in a deep breath, and nodded. "Alright." She squeezed her hand in a fist, and stood up. "We - or, I at least - are going to teleport back to the station. Boso Ta will get his test - and Boso Ta... Good work. Please proceed with teleportation research as far as you can take it." Boso Ta did a somersault in his tank, gleefully, at that request. "Oh, with pleasure, Assistant!" Najia looked at Ace. "Shall we try this teleport thing?" "Yes, let's!" Ace stood, and had a positively gleeful look. "This sounds... Fun."
Najia could only smile at that, and nod. "Right. Have the Flea and 'Chipmunk's' ships brought to the pads," she directed. "Actually, no; send all of my Chipmunk ships ahead; have them dock on the defense platform at the 18B gate, the Endeavor tends to hang out there anyway." She stood. "So... Just... The lift?" "Just the lift," Boso Ta confirmed. "Though, in the very near future, we suspect we'll be able to initiate the teleport from arbitrary locations."
Najia nodded. "Alright. A quick stop before we go." She smiled, heading for the lift.
A scant few minutes later, Najia was in the as-yet-impersonal-and-unfinished ready room, with Captain Kevlin. The two of them eyed one another warily, for a long few moments, and Najia pointed two fingers at her, starting the conversation. "You're not just some shipyard-working spacer," she said. "You stand like you're professional military." "And you stand like you're a free-wheeling, over-inflated sorority sister who lucked out and won the lottery," Kevlin shot back at her, smirking.
Najia blinked. She blinked again. Then she laughed, hard, curling her arm around her belly, the other hand reaching out to rest on the hull next to the window. When she looked up, she grinned. "Okay, now I know you're not a spy. No spy with a brain in their head would say something that's as likely to get them fired as anything else." Selaia smirked at her. "Unless I'm a very good spy who's compiled a massive psych profile on you."
"Which I strongly doubt," Najia shot back. "But you're also not afraid of being fired." Selaia shrugged. "No, I'm not. Working in your shipyard is nice, yes; probably the second-best job I've ever had, but I'm not going to kiss your ass and be a yes-woman. I won't do that for anyone."
Najia straightened up, and peered into Selaia's eyes. They were, not hostile, but hard with resolve. She smirked slightly, and nodded. "Good. I don't like yes-women, they fuck things up. So, you think I'm, what -" "An irresponsible, idealistic child who managed to, through luck and probably some skill, wind up controlling a growing paramilitary business empire," Selaia shot back, walking around her, eyeing her up. Najia snorted at that. "Child? Seriously?"
"You're not a veteran. You're not a politician. You're not a businesswoman. You might be doing a credible job pretending to be those latter two, but you're a university student who got lucky, and is good at putting on faces." Najia bristled, but shoved it down; the Argon-born starship operator was abrasively blunt... But she was airing doubts Najia herself had. "Harsh," Najia said. "But... Not entirely untrue. So, why are you still here, if you don't like me?" There was a long, quiet moment. "I didn't say I didn't like you," Selaia said, softly. "But you are all of those things." She smirked.
"And you like that, then?" Najia smirked back. "What got you discharged, presumably dishonorably, from the Argon navy? Your big mouth that can't seem to shut up? Called a superior out on some bullshit that you couldn't stand to let stand?" "You'd think that, but no; fraternization." Selaia met her gaze, levelly. "Though I was on the thinnest of ice before that for, as you say, speaking my mind." She walked around Najia, appraising her. "Are you planning to sack me? Should I grab my go bag and begone?" Laughing, Najia shook her head. "No! I was actually going to ask if you wanted the ship for real, not just for the trials."
That, at least, took Kevlin aback for a moment. She walked away, paused, turned. Looked Najia up and down again, slowly. Najia felt self-conscious about it, raising her eyebrow, as the other woman crossed her arms over her chest. "Do I have to get on my knees for the job?" Najia blinked at that. It struck her out of left field, and she rocked back on her heels. "I - I'm sorry... What?" "Do you expect me to put out - sexually - for the position," Selaia repeated, slowly, her voice... Almost unnervingly neutral; uncannily, composedly so. Najia gawped at her for a long few moments, her mouth hanging open. Closed. Open. Closed. She reached up and rubbed her face with her hands for a few moments. "I... I'm sorry, I - what kind of - where did you - what gave you..." She took a deep breath. "No. Emphatically no. What on or off Earth gave you that idea?"
A few moments that seemed like almost an eternity passed, then Selaia shrugged, and seemed to shrink in a bit, relaxing. "Frankly? You have a reputation as a party girl that goes back to Segaris and has followed you here what with all the Segaris Pioneers you're hiring away, preferentially beginning with your old circle of school pals - with whom you're pretty obviously in a, what did the Segaris call it, 'polycule' with. Your politics can only be described as 'liberal to an extreme,' given the way you run your stations domestically, and I overheard a snippet of one of your small craft pilots describing, very bluntly, you going down on her in the cockpit, after offering her the job. She was discussing this with the captain of Fenrir, who compared notes with her. I took that to infer that you liked to be sexual with those captains you personally offered a job to."
Najia flushed red, her jaw dropping, and looked out the window again, at the gas giant hanging in the distance. She groaned-and-laughed at the same time. "Fatimah and Xiaowen... I am going to scold them for gossiping somewhere public," she said, laughing so hard it brought tears to her eyes, and rubbed them out of her eyes. Then she heaved a heavy sigh. "And that didn't chase you away?" "I didn't expect I'd ever run into you personally," the shipyard expert said, "and frankly, given the dizzying breadth of corruption a kid with suddenly-unlimited power could get up to, being a little skeevy with grown adults is on the low end." Najia face-palmed again, harder. "Alright, look," she said, turning around. "Fatimah, Xiaowen and I are old friends from Segaris University. Yes, we're a thing, a big, messy, multi-tentacular thing that we're not ashamed of, but you've rather taken the wrong end of the stick there. It was roleplay, what they were discussing, pure and simple. A few moments of kink snatched from the jaws of some really messy, pressy schedules, between attempts to make the galaxy an overall better place and setbacks. Yes, I pretended to abuse my position and money to make them, for want of another word, perform to keep their jobs. And later, Fatimah turned that exact position around on me, while Xiaowen tied me up and -"
"Enough," Selaia said, laughing; finally her composure had broken, and she'd flushed, chuckling and holding her hand up. "Okay, I get it... I apologize, miss Takio. Clearly, I was badly mistaken." "... Najia, please," Najia said, blushing and grinning. "Since you already know me so well anyway."
Selaia snorted at her, and smiled, wryly, nodding. Najia met her eyes, for a long few moments. "So, that fraternization that got you kicked out of the Argon military..." "When you're a military intelligence lieutenant and a famous, well-liked starship captain insinuates that your career might stall out by standing on your feet but might go places on your knees, you weigh your options," Selaia said, bluntly. She pushed off the desk, and pushed past Najia, staring out the window herself. "So I started delivering reports from under his desk instead of in front of it. I hated myself a little, at first... Then he started telling me to sit up on his desk after. That was a little..." She huffed. "I dunno. Then his wife found out."
Najia winced. "Oh, damn. And monogamy is a big thing in Argon space, I take it?" "Well, yes, but she didn't blow up quite like you're expecting. She blew up at him all right - for not telling her and sharing me with her immediately. I got caught by my immediate superior - the one who didn't like my mouth - going to her home, who tried to use the thing to bring me, the captain and his wife - a defense industrial contractor - down. They had political connections, and when all was said and done, I basically took the fall for everything. The Lt.C who found out I was basically being half-bribed, half-blackmailed into being a kinky, connected couple's toy got to quietly resign, the captain got promoted to commodore, and I got the option to take an administrative discharge with my commission revoked for conduct unbecoming, or get totally shafted at a court martial and take the fall for everything, doing prison time."
Najia blinked at that, and winced. "That's... That's..." "If you give me a pity look, I swear I will punch you in the loins and tell you to take your offer and shove it." Proper fire glared in the skipper's eyes as she turned to look at Najia. Najia stepped back, her jaw half-dropping, and then she shook her head, laughing. "No - no! I was saying, 'that's a shit sandwich.'"
Selaia snorted roughly at her, and turned back to look out the window. "Yeah... Yeah, it was. Anyway, that was then, then I wound up here. I signed on a freighter to forget my past, made port here, decided to take a job in the shipyard because it paid better than the freighter, was work I could do, and the habs here are wonderful. Then I found myself in front of you, and, well... Sorry, for thinking you might be kind of a hump."
Najia snorted. "But not so much of a hump that it was an automatic deal-breaker, huh?" She scratched her head, craning to look up at the Oberth hanging 'above' them. "Yes... No... Maybe? I don't honestly know what I was going to say if you said yes," the Argon woman admitted. "At first, when I first... When I found the whole 'prostitution is legal and regulated' here thing, I was skeeved out. I tried to leave, but, there weren't actually any ships that would take me that day. Then I wound up actually finding out that one of my coworkers - someone I was kind of chummy with - was turning tricks on the side, and... Well, we had a chat about it. He was from Segaris, and thought it was no big deal. And, well... I... Kind of... Had whored myself. I didn't feel good about it then. I still don't, but... I was... Well, willing, I suppose, to at least see if the offer you made, the way you made it, made me feel greasy about it like it did back then, or if it was... I don't know; open? Honest?"
"Well, I'm glad to have pleasantly surprised you - though I am totally going to kill Fatimah and Xiaowen for gossiping in public," Najia muttered without sincere heat, continuing "and no... I'm really not going to demand that someone put out for a job. You just... Impressed me with what I saw, in the admittedly very brief time that I've known you, but hey, I'm the kind of impulsive idiot who takes a leap of faith based on her gut instinct."
"Then, in that case..." Selaia turned to her, and smirked. "I'll skipper this ship for you for now, but I want something bigger when it's available. And not assigned to a reaction force or routine escort or defense duty or something." Najia snorted again, and laughed. She took a step back, and looked Selaia up and down again, smirking and grinning. The formerly-Argon military intelligence woman didn't look particularly extraordinary, but she shifted to stand at 'parade rest,' arms folding behind her back, eyes piercing and patient. "Setting terms, huh?" Najia smirked. She looked like she was considering it, but Selaia had impressed her - and she was also the first hire she'd had who had a formal military background outside the Segaris Pioneers. That perspective could be useful. She crossed her arms. "It just so happens I'm planning to build more ships," she said. "Some of them will be quite large." She extended her hand to Selaia, who took and shook it, firmly. "You wouldn't happen to be planning to construct a Centaur II Battleship, would you?" Selaia asked, grinning at her. Najia laughed. "That depends; if you have the full plans for a Centaur II* in your back pocket, I'll make sure you get the first one out of the yard."
Laughing now, the other woman reached back with her free hand, and dramatically patted one of her rear pockets. "Damn, I appear to have left those plans in my other trousers." She let go, grinning and shaking her head, sighing. "Sorry, again, for... You know." Najia shook her head. "Jeeze, are you ever gonna stop beating yourself up for it?" She shook her head, laughing exasperatedly. "I don't know," the Captain answered bluntly, laughing and wryly face-palming. "I thought for sure that you were either going to say yes, or you'd fire me on the spot for even asking. And now I'm asking myself, do I even deserve the post?"
"For, what? Being willing to entertain the idea?" Najia shook her head, and, taking a bit of a risk, reached out and laid her hand heavily on Captain Kevlin's shoulder, squeezing it. "It's not like I'm running a state military with rules against fraternization or anything. What I care about is; can you do it, and are you someone whose general... Mmmmmh... It's not exactly right to say 'someone whose morals I like,' so much as..." Najia trailed off for a moment; Ace's morals were certainly questionable, even by her standards - in some cases especially by her standards - but she had bonded with her, trusted her. "Someone I feel I can trust to continue to be someone whose actions I like. If you wanna be woo-woo about it, someone whose spirit I like. And you? I have a good feeling about you; I've been wrong before, but... Not often."
Selaia snorted at her, looking at her, then looking back to the window. "And you'd trust someone who was willing to go down on you to get the post?" "As its own qualification, no. But it doesn't make me distrust you," Najia said. "Especially with how you were prepared to evaluate how a 'yes' answer made you feel and then tell me to take that offer and shove it. So, we good? You want to skipper a ship for me?" "Just that simply? No... Strings attached?"
Najia laughed, and turned, leaning against the windowsill and looking at the other woman's head in profile, smirking. "Do you want strings attached?" Selaia started at the question, turning to look at her. She worked her mouth a few times, but couldn't seem to find words; she did, however, flush warmly, looking somewhat guilty, and swallowed. "Okay, look; you're conflicted, obviously." Najia took the professional spacer's hand, squeezing it carefully. "Like I said, the job is yours if you say yes, no strings attached. Completely separately from that, if you are interested in, you know, the idea of getting to know me more thoroughly, that's, you know, a matter we can bring up later. And if you're not, then I'm not going to mention it again."
Flushing, Selaia turned away from her, but kept her hands in hers; squeezing Najia's hand, tightly. "This is so fucking unprofessional of me to even be considering," she huffed. "Sure it is. And you impressed me by being able to put on and take off the 'Professional Selaia' almost instantly. I bet you could summon 'Captain Kevlin' back in a moment."
Selaia blinked at her, turning her head to look at her. She drew her hand back, took a deep breath, and faced the window again. Folded her arms behind her back, and executed a crisp right-face, her face schooled into stern impassivity. Her eyes were mirthful, but the rest was the very picture of the woman Najia had seen standing by at attention while she indulged herself in helming the ship personally. "Just like that," Najia said, grinning brightly. Her grin softened Selaia's demeanor, and she smiled in turn. "You're a deep well of passion who can put on 'military bearing' in a moment. And you're not a yes-woman. That's what I need."
Working her jaw slightly, Selaia relaxed, chuckling and sighing; she flushed again, and sighed. "Thank you," she said. "For the opportunity; for not getting pissed at me, for... Well, for being understanding, and tolerating me being an aggro neurotic about it when things didn't go the ways I'd seen them going." "It's fine," Najia assured her, holding her hands up, placatingly, and to her surprise, Selaia took them, squeezing. "I, um... I..." Flushing and looking away, Selaia swallowed. "Is that offer going to be on the table if I need to sleep on it?"
Najia laughed, grinning and shaking her head. "Oh, you're amazing. Yes, absolutely; sleep on it. Hell, I have to get going; places to go, pirate clans to infiltrate. Fun stuff! Speaking of which, please make the ship combat-ready and take it to the Windfall/Eighteen B hardpoint to dock. I'm not saying I expect anything to go down, but..."
"Understood." Selaia looked back up; she remained flushed, but smiled. "That, I can do." She squeezed Najia's hands, and Najia squeezed back, then let go. She pivoted on her heel, slipping out of the Ready Room and headed for the lift; Ace and Marta had disembarked said left and were standing to the side of the corridor, with Marta telling Ace an anecdote from when they were still young class-taking students at Segaris U. "Well that took longer than expected," Marta said. "Everything good?" "Everything's good," Najia said. "And we have a new captain. I figured she should keep Koshirae for now. So, how does this lift-teleporter work?"
"Like this," Ace said, stepping into the lift. She pressed a button, and Najia felt a strange, yet familiar sensation start to take hold; like the feeling she got just before the headquarters had transported itself. Like falling in all directions at once; then, with a bright flash, she found herself in another lift. Blinking, Najia felt herself up for a few moments, then strode out; they were on one of the landing pads at the headquarters, and standing above them was the Golden Flea. Her jaw dropped. "That... That... Was both incredible, and..." "Somehow underwhelming," Ace concluded with her. "It was not wholly without fanfare, yet somehow, I anticipated... More."
Najia nodded. "Right. So, how should we do this?" She looked to Ace, who smiled at her. "We stagger the arrival of Chipmunk's ships and mine in the vicinity of the Arcadian Endeavour, as though we had scattered, lain low, and were returning from somewhat different places." Najia nodded. "Right. And, I wonder... Would it be possible to fit the Flea with a teleporter?"
"Indeed it would," Ace agreed. "I asked Boso Ta if this was possible and he said it was very simple. He delivered the equipment to the Flea before I had finished asking, in fact, though I do not think I will be able to install it and fly home simultaneously." Najia grinned at Ace, and Ace grinned back at her, adding, "but, if you wished to fly back with me, one of us could tinker, while the other flies."
Najia grinned at Ace, and looked back to Marta. "That sounds good to me. Would you please take the Jackdaw and -" "Head on ahead while the two of you fiddle with Ace's ship and snuggle up naked while the ship is on autopilot?" Marta asked back, smirking. Najia flushed, glancing around; there was nobody within earshot. "Mmmm-hmmmm. You ain't foolin' noone, sister." Marta grasped Najia, pulled her close, and kissed her. Najia felt herself melt into the grasp, kissing back instinctually, embracing her oldest friend and turning her head to meet the kiss. Then it ended, Marta pulled back, and stepped back, looking down at Ace with her hands on her hips.
Ace blinked, peering up at the far-taller, stronger human. For a moment, she was concerned she would be threatened again, then she sucked in a sharp breath as Marta reached under her arms, grasped her chest, and simply lifted her to eye-level, then hugged her tightly. Ace let the breath out slowly, tentatively returning the embrace, and asked, "I... thought you distrusted me," she commented. "I did," Marta said, bluntly. "But Najia, apparently, took a chance on you, and figures you're alright. She's been right about that kind of thing a lot more often than I have." Marta squeezed her, and Ace sucked in a breath in alarm; the human could probably squeeze her so strongly that she passed out, yet she didn't squeeze so hard she hurt. It rather felt like being in Najia's arms, in fact. "So, I'm guessing you're one of us now. That ain't gonna be a problem with, you know, the whole pirate clan, is it?"
There it was; the proverbial shoe. Najia swallowed, glad that Ace couldn't see. She had been studiously not raising that point. "It will not be, provided... Provided I am not asked to betray the Curs. Membership in a pirate clan is... Voluntary, for the most part," Ace said. "I will not betray them." She looked back at Najia. "And, I think, neither will you." "But you are willing to leave them... For us?"
"For you," Ace said, reaching out with her tail, wrapping it around Najia's arm. "And, perhaps, the rest of you, in time," she added, looking at Marta, trilling softly. "But I will have to see the Maestro's big scheme through." "Family. I get that," Marta opined, setting Ace down. "Y'all fly safe. We'll filter in like a disorganized rabble."
Ace nodded, and turned to board the Flea. "What took you so long, anyway?" "Oh geeze." Najia followed the Teladi pilot. "It's a long story."
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2023.03.26 12:12 Prestigious_Army_224 Should I (34F) feel guilty for telling on my boss (50F)? Any opinions are most welcome

Hello! (Had to repost due to not meeting standards)
This is my first ever post on here, so I don't know what to expect. I suspect I just need to vent to someone...
I work in healthcare. The job I have gives me the leeway of choosing the tasks that I do. I will name these tasks A, B, C and D. I do all of these. Partly because I want to do the best I can for the patients I see and partly because to be honest, if I don't then they just don't get done. My boss has the exact same qualifications I have, so she can also do all these, except she only does tasks A and B and she does them... poorly.
When I have vacation days or sick days, I catch up on all my tasks when I return. She does only her tasks. When she has vacation days, I do her tasks also (see her patients etc).
She is 16 years older than me, so experience-wise should be much above me. Except she is not. Because she doesn't want to be. She asks for my help with her tasks in the smallest matters, things she should definitely know. She doesn't. I have to watch her and correct her.
All the hard cases are sent my way because my colleagues etc trust my opinion. I am exhausted. I work from home (basically overtime) on weekends and still am always behind because the workload is so uneven.
I have tried talking to her, tried to offer to help teach her or help her. She just says that she doesn't want to learn anymore. She wants to retire. Well, she still has at least 5 more years to go before she can do that.
Last week was hellish. Awful cases. She saw a patient that she misdiagnosed. Luckily, she asked me to come see the patient again with her to confirm her diagnosis. It was soooo far from what she was thinking... it was life threatening. It scared me, to be honest. Her only reaction was that she hopes this doesn't change my opinion of her.
I immediately took charge, ran some more tests. Her reaction: to let her know the final diagnosis... I asked her to help me with this case, something that fell into task category C, which she normally refuses. I told her that I simply do not have the time. And could she please start it and I would check her work and help her complete the task.
The next day she flat out told me that she isn't going to do it. For HER patient. I told our supervisor about this situation (who is up to speed on everything that goes on). She asked us both to have a meeting with her and legal. It was a lengthy talk, where I said little, because my colleague/boss kept refusing, bringing up her age and other ridiculous reasons. However, she cannot be forced to complete a C task. Again, because we have the ability to choose. Stupid, I know...
The aftermath was that we were both served with papers informing us that we had to urgently deliver the test results. We both did. I turned in two pages. She turned in barely one, with errors, an incomplete document, that she refused to sign (therefore making it invalid and useless for the patient).
She asked me why I did this to her. I could only say "because I had enough". She feels no guilt... a two year old little girl could have died due to her incompetence. She is pissed off at me for making a scene and not quietly taking care of the situation, like before.
It drives me mad. It hurts. She makes 40% more than I do, but does so little. I know that is irrelevant, but it grates on me. What also grates on me is the stealing. She steals every day. Little things, pens, markers, toilet paper, bin liners (garbage bags)... our snacks (like candy, tea bags, coffee). I am trying to give context. Maybe I overreacted due to my utter disgust for this person. But I have honestly been nothing but kind and helpful towards her until now.
I just couldn't take it anymore. I was scared. The first thought that went through my mind was "how many more?" How many more had she misdiagnosed? She could have been sued, lost her licence... but I helped enough that nothing will happen in this case. A slap on the wrist from our supervisor.
I plan to not help her anymore. It feels like aiding and abetting at this point... BUT the people who would suffer would be her patients... I don't know if I can bring myself to do this.
And so... while writing this out I figured out that the reason I feel so guilty for her practically hating me now is that she won't ask me for help anymore and so I won't be able to catch her mistakes and fix them. What should I do??
I just don't know anymore. I am so sick and tired of this situation. I have been offered her position. A switch in our positions basically. I refused because everything on inventory would be my responsibility. And I'm not the one stealing... she can sign for all the shit she steals herself.
Any opinions are welcome... I hope I made some sense... Thank you all!
TL;DR! I complained about my boss and there may be concequences I did not foresee in the heat of the moment
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2023.03.26 12:06 TrendsWide 520: Web server is returning an unknown error Reviews 2022 520: Web server is returning an unknown error Reviews 2022 submitted by TrendsWide to TrendsNewsWorld [link] [comments]